Home of the CommuniD BBQs

Posts tagged “love

Jesus and Wiffle Ball

Here’s a picture.

Here’s Bob and Dave (white homeless men) teaching Zane (4 year old son of a working single black mother) how to hit a wiffle ball at the Elevate Detroit Mt. Clemens CommuniD BBQ today.

They say a picture is worth a thousand words. But I think this one’s priceless.

Jesus is all over it.





5 Year Anniversary Luau & Pig Roast Press Release

5 Year Anniversary Luau & Pig Roast Press Release

Elevate Detroit, a nonprofit organization that specializes in creating community-building events across southeast Michigan is celebrating their fifth birthday on June 16, 2012.

The organization, launched in 2007, began when a few friends wondered what it would look like to haul a grill into Cass Corridor, Detroit and share a meal with the homeless people they found there.  Since then, they have added four more locations (Pontiac, Flint, Mount Clemens and Hazel Park) and provide approximately 1,200 meals/month across southeast Michigan.  All of the meals and supplies are provided completely by people who attend the events.

The celebration will be at their Detroit CommuniD BBQ location: Robert Redmond Plaza at the Corner of Second Ave. and Selden St. The event will be luau themed with a pig roast from Coal’s BBQ.  The festivities begin at 1:00 p.m. and will go continue late into the afternoon.



Link to Glenn Beck on YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gcSgWLaJuNE
Link to Free Press article about Bing’s reaction: http://www.freep.com/article/20110301/ENT03/110301012/Bing-knocks-Glenn-Beck-Detroit-Hiroshima-comparison
Link to Patrick Reyes blog post: http://patrickreyes.net/2011/03/02/maybe-glen-beck-was-right/

So I’m a few days behind with the whole Glenn Beck thing…
It’s March 4th and although I’ve had a couple articles and a blog post bookmarked for a couple days now, I’m just catching up.  But really… I don’t feel like there’s much to say.

For you who don’t know yet, you can click through the links above and read for yourself or I’ll try to give a quick recap here:

Basically Glenn Back compared that last 50-60 years of Hiroshima’s history to Detroit.

Hiroshima was hit with an atomic bomb in 1945.  Scientists thought the city would be uninhabitable for decades.  Instead, they people decided to rebuild their city.  Now, 66 years later, Hiroshima is a thriving metropolis.  Beck points out that, yes there was some government assistance in rebuilding Hiroshima.  But the majority of the work, time and money it took to rebuild came from individuals who loved their city and would not let it lie in ruins.

Over this same time period Detroit has gone from a vibrant and thriving metropolis, the “Paris of the West,” to ruins.  Beck says that bad and corrupt government, corporate and union policies are what destroyed the Motor City.

Basically… yes.  I would also like to point out that he neglected to mention white flight.  White flight, in my opinion, was the catalyzing factor that enabled, encouraged and brought about bad and corrupt government, corporate and union policies.

But why is this news?  Anyone who lives in Southeast Michigan and is honest with themselves knows this to be true.  We’ve known this for decades.  We’ve watched this, we’ve experienced this and we’ve lived this for decades.  This isn’t news for February 28th, 2011.  This is old news.

Detroit today is not the Detroit that is comparable to Hiroshima.  Or maybe it is, but the timelines are just askew.  Hiroshima came to its ruin in 1945.  Detroit came to its ruin more gradually culminating early this century.  But the phrase “will the last one out, please turn out the lights” will never apply to Detroit.

Detroit is being remade.  Yes, there are some governmental changes that are helping Detroit to be remade.  But not for the most part.  For the most part it is people, individuals who have decided they love their city and are not willing to let it fall to the wayside.

What Glenn Beck is missing is the current.  The current of Detroit has changed.  The river of wealth, knowledge and education is now beginning to flow the other way.  We, together, are stemming the tide of escapism, white flight and neglect.  We are stirring a new direction for our city.  There is a new tomorrow and more importantly, there is a new today.

There’s a song by Robbie Seay Band that says,

“And it might not be
The prettiest thing that you’ll ever see
But it’s a New Day
Oh baby it’s a New Day”

This is Detroit.  And this is a New Day.  And we have a new current.  The current is a city on the incline.  The current is a city that is being remade from the ground up through grassroots efforts and community organizers who are encouraging people to love their city and their neighbors.  And what is most exciting to me about the current is the strong role the body of Christ is playing in it.

We have people reversing white flight.  We have people sharing with other as they have need.  We have people beautifying their homes, their blocks and their city.  And they’re doing it for no other reason than to show the world that it’s a beautiful place and should be treated that way.  We have CCS, the DIA and the DSO.  We have food and restaurants galore.  We have urban prairies with deer, pheasants and chickens roaming free.  We are number 2 in the nation for fishing rod sales.  By consumption, we are the potato chip capital of the world.  We have more registered bowlers than anywhere else in country.  We have Critical Mass, Noel Night, the Auto Show and DEMF.

We may have inherited the problems of our parent’s Detroit.  But this is not our parent’s Detroit.  This is a New Day and it comes with a new current flowing in a new direction… forward.

Glenn Beck was right about where our problems came from.  But he’s missing where we are now.  A lot of people have been up in arms about what Glenn Beck said about Detroit.  I see no problem.  He’s right.  He’s just a bit behind the times.  There’s no point in denying our history with all of its victories and all of its defeats.  To deny one’s history is to deny one’s current state.  And I’m proud of our current state… or should I say… City.

A few links to good things: http://elevatedetroit.com (blatant self-promotion)
Palladium Boots / Johnny Knoxville video: http://www.palladiumboots.com/exploration/detroit
Requiem for Detroit by the BBC: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b00rkm3y (no, not the video clip unfortunately, but I do have a DVD)

Christmas CommuniD BBQ

I’m so excited today is finally here!

We’re planning an outdoor family style dinner in late December in Detroit. From a logical perspective, from a rational perspective, it’s a dumb idea at best. From a Kingdom perspective… well I think it’s a Kingdom idea.

The idea is to have a family style sit down dinner. This isn’t us serving them. This is all of God’s family sitting at a common table and sharing a meal together in celebration of Christ. Christmas. It’s what the word truly means… celebration of Christ.

Close your eyes for a moment and just picture the park… The gazebo with holes rusted all over the roof. The light poles with no lights on top. The tags sprawling across the building wall. The dolphin.

It’s a place known in the neighborhood for crack and heroine dealing. It’s a violent place. A vile place. It’s a place I’ve been told that many neighborhood people won’t come unless “you’re here”. It’s a place I’ve been told that, “White people don’t belong here.” It’s a stronghold of a defeated enemy. And it’s being redeemed.

This is Christmas Day. Today there will be strings of lights and Christmas decorations. There will be tables all pushed together into one BIG table. There will be chairs lining all the way around. Hot food aplenty sprawling before our eyes and hungry bellies. Every color of person created (yes, even white people), every income level, every education level, every strength, every weakness, every addiction, every habit, good and bad, all beckoned to come sit together and share a common meal in celebration of our newly born and now risen Lord Jesus.

I don’t know what heaven will be like. I don’t know what God’s Kingdom looks like in its fullness. I hope we’ll be able to fly. That would be fun. But I do know that whatever it looks like… today we shall see a reflection… Yes, we shall see a reflection of Heaven. That reflection won’t be in rusty gazebo roofs, broken lamp posts or cement statues of oceanic mammals. It won’t be in strings of lights or piles of snow or sidewalk salt. It won’t be in decorated cookies or trees and it won’t be in pots of ham or green beans or dinner rolls. The reflection we’ll see will be in the eyes and hearts of every person around that table. Every glint of hope and faith and love in every eye glowing all the brighter as glint sees glint and love flows evermore like a fountain of life. We may not see what Heaven will look like. But in fleeting moments… if we’re paying attention… we’ll know what it feels like.

Grace and peace to each of you. It’s a deep honor to serve, love and celebrate Christ alongside each you. Truly… Merry Christ Mass