When we enter the church, it is one of the first lessons we learn. This world is broken. We are broken ourselves, and we are surrounded by broken people. We know that intellectually, but does it seep out into the way we live our lives? Perhaps we are just not very good at communicating it to the world around us.
Vince Antonucci is the Pastor of a church in the midst of Sin City. The people he feels called to reach out to, are caught in self-destructive lifestyles. The ugliness of their lives can make them believe that God is for others, but they are certainly beyond his redemption. Vince brings them the good news, that God is for them. God is for the drug dealer. He is for the prostitute. God has come to bring light to the darkness that we so often find ourselves in.
I enjoyed Vince's book. I hope that it will be a welcome call to the broken in this world. I believe that Vince has presented the truth of the Gospel for the hurting around us. He has shared amazing stories of redemption and healing from the people who have been reach through his church in Las Vegas.
I also enjoyed Vince's book for the challenge it ought to put before Christians. It was not long ago, that we could have fit into any of the categories that Vince lists in his book. We may not have been a prostitute in Vegas, but our own brokenness was no less severe. We had declared war on the God of the universe. We were living our lives as if we were the master of the universe, and then a loving God delivered us from ourselves. Have we forgotten how far he has brought us? If we are honest with ourselves, God often drags us along nearer and nearer to himself. Do we live this reality before the world around us? Do we show the wounded that God is for them? God forbid we should live our lives in a way that would make them feel God has nothing for them.
It can be easy to look at someone like Vince, and believe he is deployed on the spiritual battlefield, but aren't the people that he is reaching all around us too? Don't we have something valuable to offer those around us, that are hurt and seeking? As we read Vince's book, we ought to be seeking a way to show the world around us that God IS for them.