Friday, May 30, 2003


I did a radio feature recently about the phenomena of "war chalking", the growing practice among computer hackers who find open wireless computer networks in urban areas and then leave chalk marks on sidewalks or buildings to let others know there is a network nearby that can be tapped into.

War chalking is actually a term that dates back to the depression era, when hobos would leave marks with chalk or coal to pass on information to fellow "road travelers" about an area or its residents. For example, the marks might indicate if a homeowner was a soft touch for a free meal, or if the occupants were hostile to "Knights of the Road".

What if Christians had a similar system? I'm not talking about putting an Icthus "fish" on the back of your car. What if we were honest about what we might find inside our houses of God? What sign would we find scrawled outside our temples of worship?

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Our most successful outreach tool at our church is our sign. It's not fancy. It sits near the street. It doesn't have clever God puns on it that are changed weekly. It's not shaped like a cross. It says the name of our church and the time of worship. I wonder though how many people pass by our church because our sign doesn't tell them what they need to know most: not to fear what they will find inside.
We are not salvation salesmen, but fellow weary travelers seeking sustenance and healing. We've just made the choice to journey together. We do not claim to be "Holy" so much as we are trying to become "whole".

I wish we could "God chalk".
We too are beggars... but we're willing to share our bread.