This will be a quick post as I am falling asleep and really need to just go to bed. I was wanting input on something I have been thinking about. When we bought our home we stayed in this neighborhood because we felt that God had led us here to be a witness to the people around us. We live in the inner city and there are next to no churches in the area and those who know Christ are definitely few. We had thought that one day God would have us start a church or something. Dan had been taking classes through our denomination to be a pastor but that ended when he hurt his back. With no money for classes and not being able to sit at the computer long enough to get anything done he had to step back from all of that. Now we don't know what God has in store for us.
We bought a house in a neighborhood that was so-so because we were wanting to make an impact. Now we don't know where we are going with that and the once okay neighborhood is now rapidly falling downhill. Once I would have walked around our neighborhood but now don't feel it is safe to go walking alone in the daytime. We have at least seven abandoned houses on our one block alone. We suspect that our former neighbor (he just moved recently) was breeding his pit bulls to fight. There was a raid on a drug house seven houses down and there is another suspected drug house across the street from that. We get emails notifying us when a sex offender moves within a mile of our house and it has been updating at least once if not twice a week lately.
All of that to say this- when do you draw a line between telling others about Christ and shining for him and the safety of your family? Is it ever okay to say that your family comes before the Great Commission? We are suppose to die to self and sacrifice for the gospel- but what does that really mean? I don't see us moving anytime soon, these are just the questions I have sometimes. I know some people say that when you have children they are your top ministry priority and nothing should take you from that mission field. On the other hand, although you don't want to expose them to any danger unnecessarily, you also should be putting top priority on following God and the Gospel. Many people in other nations are loosing their children's lives because they wont back down from the gospel's truth. I heard of a Christian pastor in a Muslim who wouldn't denounce Christ and had to watch his family die from disease because no one would give him the meds he needed for them.
I know Paul mentioned that it would be easier to serve the Gospel if you weren't married as marriage divides your loyalties. I truly think having children complicates that more then marriage does. Having your mate die for your faith seems an easier price then to watch your children suffer.
So where do you think the line should be drawn?