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This Saturday night don’t forget to set your clocks back one hour!

Attention all Immanuel Members and Potential New Members:

Mark your calendars for December 6th for our Annual Meeting. More details to come…

Holla IBCers!

My name is Danny. I’ve been going to Immanuel for 10 years. Wow, time does fly by fast…

I was born in Chicago and have lived in the Lincoln Park area for most of my life. In my free time I enjoy reading, playing volleyball, traveling, and eating meat.

I currently work at as a Senior Advocate. My job primarily involves interviewing potential employees, training new hires, fielding questions from a team of about 10 people, delegating tasks, and ensuring that our daily operations run smoothly. Our team provides technical support for dealers and sales so our day consists of answering a lot of phone calls and responding to emails.

So I wanted to share a few of my struggles and what God has been showing me in recent days. To be honest, work can be depressing at times. I have many days where I ask myself, “What am I doing here?” or I have days where I feel like a robot doing task after task. Like everyone else at work, I can also find myself counting the days to the weekend. Mondays are the worst. Nevertheless, I am always thankful that God has provided me this job and the ability to work.

So how does what I do connect with my Christian faith? Well for me personally, God has used my job to expose a lot of my weaknesses. In recent years, it is through my vocation that God has exposed my selfishness, impatience, and lack of love. It is also through my work that God has taught me a lot about teamwork, training, leadership, and being a man of God.

I’ve been learning that my vocation is not merely about being a hard and faithful worker or being a witness, but it is also about growing in holiness. I can name numerous times where God has used situations in my job to work on a particular area of my life.

I’ve been working full-time for about 4 years now and I always thought that graduating school was the hard part and that once you started working, everything was smooth sailing. I was wrong. There are always new challenges to face and God has reminded me that comfort and peace can only be found in Jesus.

Thanks for reading everyone!

The following is a distillation of a Tim Keller lecture entitled, “It Takes a City to Raise a Child,” in which he argues why it is not only possible to raise a family in the city but actually the better option versus raising a family in the suburbs.

3 ‘Cons’ of City Life for Families:

1. Taxes and money. Taxes and rent alone are far more costly in the city. The cost of living may prohibit some of the activities parents might like to do with their families.

2. Physical logistics. Getting around is more complicated. On the ‘Front 9’ (ages 0-9), it is more difficult to physically get around with little kids. But on the ‘Back 9’ (ages 10-18), it is considerably easier. The kids can go to the doctor or dentist, school, extra-curricular activities by themselves. Outside the city, without the transportation system, parents have to drive the children everywhere until they are 16 and parents buy them a car. And, in the city, kids just can’t run and play in the yard.

3. Complexity of the educational choices. There are many educational options and navigating education for one or more children can be very complex and overwhelming. But, it can also be seen as a plus with the richness of choice.

8 ‘Pros’ to Raising Children in the City:

1. Kids will think they are living in the real world. A doctoral study found kids from Christian families were more likely to embrace their parents’ faith when they perceived their parents to be in touch with the ‘real world’, understood them, and their issues. Living in the city, children will have a greater sense of what it takes and costs to live in the ‘real world’ and will not be drawn by the ‘glitz’ of somewhere else. Cities give youth a taste of the big world and subdue the feeling to ‘run away’ to somewhere else (which often includes ‘leaving’ the faith of their parents).

2. City life undercuts youthful self righteousness towards you and your faith. Keller says Kids want to believe that their parents do not know anything about the ‘real world’. Teenagers want to believe their parents live in a ‘la-la’ world. Living intentionally in the City can provide an enormous amount of respect towards their parents’ faith when kids see tangibly what their parents’ faith means and does.

3. Your children will become more self reliant and self confident growing up in the City. Keller shares a story about sending one of his kids on a school trip to Paris in the 8th grade and how the NY parents were told that they had to communicate to their kids that they needed to stay with chaperons on the trip. Apparently NY kids figure that since they can navigate NYC- they can deal with any other city in the world.

4. The kids are going to be better at handling diversity.
The essence of suburbia is zoning (i.e. monoculturalistic). “That would be a great place to raise kids” usually means that everyone there is like me. Not so in the culturally diverse city.It creates more of a connection between home, work and church. At first, families go everywhere together. Commutes are considerably shorter, increasing face time with family. There are many more options for any and all of your kids’ interests, that you can do together with them.When kids go to church and see adults, they cannot envision ever being 35, married with kids. They can envision being 20 something and hot. In suburbia, all the young adults are in the city. Seeing young, passionate adults following Christ gives teenagers pictures of who they could become. This does not necessarily happen with a “great youth group”.

5. The City pushes the family together.

6. In the City, teenagers can more easily see a Christianity they can envision becoming.

7. Parents can help kids process the real world.
Kids in the city run into issues that many other kids do not run into until they go off to college- only at college you are not there to help them navigate these issues. In essence, Keller says you “go to college with your kids before they go to college.” The diversity of city schools, neighborhoods allows kids to be more comfortable with who they are.

8. The pressure to conform in the City, in general, is less pervasive.

Pumpkins, games and treats…

Date: 10/24/09
Start Time: 10:00 AM – 2:00 PM
Schedule Notes: All Ages
Cost: free
Location : Dvorak Park (1119 W. Cullerton)

Halloween festivities include fun for the entire family with great pumpkin patches, haunted houses (and not so haunted houses), parties and much more. At the Chicago Park District’s pumpkin patches, you can pick your personal favorite from a field filled with pumpkins of all sizes, and many of our pumpkin patches offer some of the following activities: pony rides, pumpkin decorating, petting zoos, photo stations and treats. Activities are designed to appeal to all ages. Have a fun Halloween in the parks!

Halloween in the parks is sponsored by Walgreens

On October 18th and 19th Wilco – the long-time Chicago band that’s just now starting to get the recognition it deserves – is playing at the UIC Pavilion. Tickets here.


I’m Mike. I moved to Chicago two years ago to go to school at UIC. I’m an Electrical Engineering major and will be graduating in May. I live in Tri-Taylor with my parents.

Along with school I also work part-time at Radio Shack. I got my job at Radio Shack by shot gun applying to a bunch of places via the webernets. It worked out well, because although working at Radio Shack has very little to do with the technical side of electronics and much more with retail, it does occasionally overlap.

The typical day-to-day is mostly waiting on customers and helping/watching them find what they need. My Radio Shack is located near the Pacific Garden Mission so we get a lot of traffic from the shelter. Typically these people can be the most frustrating and dissatisfied customers. I’ve recently been convicted to stop treating them differently from other people. What better way to show God’s love for them than to go out of my way and give them the best service I can despite their attitudes. This is still something I struggle with every day.

All of my co-workers were raised Catholic which seems to be a great road block to sharing my faith because they all think they know what Christianity is. I’m often faced with trying to re-explain something that they think they understand, but it almost always feels futile. I know that it’s not my responsibility to save them, so I pray that God can use me to at least plant seeds in their lives. I often pray that when we do have a conversation about something theological that God causes them to be unable to forget it or just put it out of their minds.

Later on,


The PilsenGrowingStationCommunityGarden will be co-hosting a fall celebration on Saturday, October 17th. The event will be from 11:00 AM – 3:00 PM. We will be having a demonstration of Woodland Indian weaving techniques, pumpkin carving/decorating, and many other festivities. There will be hot cider and hot chocolate for refreshments. Anyone can join! Contact the Smiths at adamsarasmith for more details…

This Sunday is the MARATHON in Chicago (go Anne-Marie!).

Since it will be impossible to get to The Meeting Place in the morning, we are joining The Near West Vineyard for their service at 4:30 PM. The Near West Vineyard shares The Meeting Place with us and the same desire to see Jesus made known in the UIC Area.

Hello friends at Immanuel. Allow me to introduce myself. My name is Phil. I grew up in Peoria, IL, where most of my family still lives. I currently live in the South Loop area near Chinatown. I am married with no kids…yet. My wife Tracy is a nanny in the city’s near north side. She is the most awesome wife in the world. This has been made continually clear to me because of my vocation. As I write I am feeling the effects of my job, a normally tired always 3rd shift doorman at 1100 N. Lakeshore Dr. My dear wife with great patience and a calm gentle demeanor not only puts up with my frequent bewildering and just plain mean cantankerousness, but also serves me continually in spite of it. Irritability is on occasion my disposition, but working the graveyard makes me even more annoying to be around. I long to have at least half the patience Tracy has. She is truly an amazing woman to be able to serve and put up with a real pinhead like me.

1100 N. Lakeshore Drive is a condominium tower 40 stories high. There are not too many people that live in the building. Each floor has only 3 units and many of the people own more than one. My basic duties can be described as 40% security and 60% customer/unit owner service. When people (unit owners) are around I try to be as friendly to them as possible and I, being a doorman, open the door for them so they can walk right on through it. The other part of my job is to be suspicious of anybody that comes to the door that I know does not live there. Any strange activity is when I go from being a doormat to doorman.

My shift is from 11:00 PM to 7:00 AM, so the majority of the time I am at work there is not a whole lot going on. For this reason I spend my shift having my devotions, reading, listening to music, and playing video games on my PSP. I have been working this shift about 3 or 4 months and have been working at this building as relief doorman since last spring. Working here has been a very eye opening experience for me. The people that live in this building are incredibly rich but so lost. Just by frequent 30 second interactions one can quickly see how deeply in need of Jesus these people are. For so many of them their lives are consumed by work, making money, and living the lavish big city lifestyle. There is one person who lives here that I see occasionally at night and sometimes early morning. She will sometimes come in around 12:00 AM then call down a little later telling me that she wants a wake up call at like 4:00 AM because she has an early flight to catch for business. She goes on to tell me that she wants the wake up call because she will be working until 3:00 AM and will only get an hour of sleep. I have found that at 1100 workaholism is as much of an addiction as alcoholism.

One night there was someone who came in around 1:00 AM and was so drunk that the cab driver brought this person to the door. Once this person got inside they could not even make it up to their unit on their own so I had to go up with them, open the door with my key, and make sure this person was safely seated before I left. There is another guy who for a while would come in drunk almost every single night. He would even be driving. Among all this tragic idolatry there is one couple who seem to be Christians. They are a doctor and journalist who recently returned from Africa doing medical missions.

In reflecting on all of this, a passage from the book of 1Peter comes to mind:

Knowing that you were not redeemed with perishable things like silver or gold from your futile way of life inherited from your forefathers, but with precious blood, as of a lamb unblemished and spotless, the blood of Christ. For He was foreknown before the foundation of the world, but has appeared in these last times for the sake of you who through Him are believers in God, who raised Him from the dead and gave Him glory, so that your faith and hope are in God (1Pe. 1:18-21).

Peter is talking directly to the Messianic Jews of the Diaspora here (1Pet 1:1), however Peter’s depiction of the blood of Christ and the hope that believers have in God is truth that so many at 1100 need to be struck by. Many of the people in this building have an obsession with getting as much money as they can and getting as much stuff as they can. The knowledge and faith that they lack is that Jesus is so much more satisfying than success and money. Success and money are both deceptively unsatisfying. Peter uses the word ‘precious’ to describe Christ’s blood that is normally the word we use to describe silver and gold, and he says that silver and gold is ‘perishable’. My longing and prayer is that they will see that the precious blood of Christ will result in their faith and hope being only in God (v. 21), and that the perishable things of this world will fade away.

I am not able to share my faith with unit owners out right but if I can develop enough of a relationship with them I might be able to share with them outside of work hours, unless they ask me about it while I am working. The other side of this job that is perhaps a bit more missional in nature is that I am not the only one working in the building overnight. There is also a garage attendant. He pulls cars around for people when they want to leave. So I have more opportunities to build a relationship with him if he doesn’t sleep or watch TV the whole time.

When I was asked to do this I thought – “Is my vocation really vignetteable?” But even perhaps the most boring vocation, in the church has some eternal implications. Thanks for allowing me to share about being a doorman at 1100 North Lake Shore Drive.