We live in a large metropolitan area where there are churches of every kind within walking distance from most of our homes. Many of those are what we call “multi-ethnic”. One that I will particularly focus on is near the heart of Dallas proper. Their stated mission, purpose and desire is:
to help accomplish Christ’s great commission, to tell every person on the planet about Jesus Christ and what He did for them on the cross.
Normalizing the multi-ethnic church is something that we need to be striving for in America. It is the first step to reaching every people group.
Mark DeYmaz is the founding pastor of the Mosaic Church (@mosaicchurch) of Central Arkansas. He is a recognized leader in the emerging Multi-Ethnic Church Movement. His first book, Building a Healthy Multi-Ethnic Church provides biblical mandate for this type of church and outlines core commitments required to make it happen. And it is happening, here and actually across the world. Interestingly, when we lived abroad for months while serving at a church in Amsterdam, we quickly realized there were worshipers there who came from around the world. It was a wonderful experience.
1) Accept a New Normal
The best part was that what we saw was normal for them. Anyone was welcome and they came by the hundreds. We need to make that normal our normal. We need to begin normalizing the multi-ethnic church.
2) Allow For A Variety of Expressions
In a large church near Dallas where everyone was welcome, many people often formed smaller groups of various cultural backgrounds within the larger church to worship, pray and study. What an expression of the body of Christ.
3) Learn From Leaders
One of the larger African American churches in our city is certainly multi-racial and multi-cultural. They not only accommodate a multi-ethnic church but strive to become more multi-ethnic. The church is huge and the ministry vibrant. I wonder why.
4) Step Out of Our Comfort Zone
I remember most recently my pastor asking that we step out of our “space” and take part in someone else’s “space” to get to know them better. To put away all of our preconceived ideas, and meet another human that isn’t like us.
5) Adjust Your Habits
We are all creatures of habit and tend to move toward what we know. God asks us to move beyond that. I am so thankful that God does not see us solely through the lens of ethnicity, color, or origin. He just sees us. Let’s work together to start the process of normalizing the multi-ethnic church!