Despair is becoming much more wide spread here in the north. In St. Clair county, Michigan (population 164,000) last week, we had two incidents of murder-suicide by out of work fathers shooting their families. In one case it included two 14 year old boys. In the county seat the same week on one night two people in separate incidents were wounded by gun fire, while a third youth was shot at in a drive by incident. This is not a normal rate of gunfire here in our self-proclaimed Maritime Capitol of the
Great Lakes, and gateway to vacation and recreation enjoyment.
In the past three years in the St. Clair county seat of Port Huron, MI (32,000 population). the sheriff auction foreclosure rate is up over 400%. Almost one fifth of owner occupied homesteads were foreclosed. For the first time, in the past year foreclosures spread evenly to include all ecomonic level neighborhoods. These numbers do not include homes where owners simply walked away. Its hard to pin down an accurate unemployment rate, but realistically, here, it is approaching 30% or more. This is occurring in southeastern Michigan, and we are usually put to shame by the realities of northern Michigan and the upper peninsula where times are even more difficult.
My question is for Christians: what are our proper concrete responses to such conditions? How do we express our faith where we live? It is hard for someone wrapped in desperate despair, or cold, or hungry, to hear a gospel message. SHARE THE GOSPEL. IF NECESSARY, USE WORDS. Any thoughts as to how you can do it?