Dear Family -
Jesus remains our focus as the church adopted what was titled the traditional plan at the General Conference(GC). This decision came after the conference spent six hours in corporate prayer. They’d sought God. But what bothered my own heart the most was the dehumanizing language used of any of our LGBT siblings. The GC — in that regard— lost hold of the love of God.
As people we have an incredible tendency to sort ourselves into categories of “us and them.” From those strongholds then we dehumanize our opponents, in order to affirm our own stance. Dehumanization comes often with labels, making the “other” an object, not a person. And generally whomever comes out on top takes a superior stance to the ones who lost. Some of that happened at GC and some has continued since.
There are no winners in these times. And as long as people are feeling threatened, endangered, that there will be some kind of witch hunt, Jesus gets lost.
I think there is more going on internationally than this current decision. And basically this plan changes nothing of what has been stated previously in the discipline. But as I said that decision was sadly accompanied by behaviors and words that didn’t help.
This brings me to our recommitment to our calling as a local place that is safe for all people, a place to “come as you are,” to be authentic, to be valued and to be invited to meet the One who knows and loves you best, Jesus. Every person is a man or woman of sacred worth, of God’s creation intent, and all of us are sinners, saved by grace, in need of God’s mercy. The ground is level at the foot of the cross, even though that was not demonstrated at GC.
Let’s remember Him as we walk forward to learn how He is urging the church forward in this era to be a place that embodies his love and his purpose in this world. Love really is the answer (John 3:16-17).
On Sunday we will take time to share together about His impact upon us, and share in prayer for the church and for one another, and share in a love feast.
We remain a place of light and love and grace and of the demonstration of the mercy of God. We remain a place focused upon the person of Jesus.
Love for you—