Christianity 201

February 13, 2017

A Place to Belong

With a blog name like Christianity 201, you would expect us to post articles for those who are wanting to move on to maturity in their Christian life, and in fact that’s what we do. But I came across this piece by Eric Bryant at Gateway Austin, a writer with whom we haven’t connected for about five years and thought this would be good for the weekend. It’s more of an outreach piece, but it’s good to get us thinking along the lines of how we express our faith to outsiders. It’s also great in a local church context.

For those of you who prefer something a little deeper, check out the link (and the end of the piece) to another recommended article by Eric.

You Belong Here

If you are afraid…
If you are lonely…
If you are bullied…
If you are grieving…
If you are anxious…
If you are hurting…
If you are broken…
If you are healing…
If you are hopeful…
If you are making progress…
If you are creative…
If you are innovative…
If you are making a difference…

No matter how you voted or if you voted…
No matter what decisions you’ve made…
No matter your spiritual or ethnic background…
No matter from where you’ve come or where you’re going…

You Belong Here.

Come as you are.

We offer faith.
We offer hope.
We offer love.

We too are broken, hurting, afraid, anxious, healing, and trying to make progress.

We are at our best when we disappear and you see Jesus instead.

We are at our best when you see Jesus through all of our God-given diversity.

We are at our best when we live out what Jesus said.

It was Jesus who said:

  • “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.”
  • “Let any one of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.””
  • “Blessed are the poor in spirit, those who mourn, the meek, the merciful, the persecuted…”
  • “So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you….”
  • ““You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you.”
  • “Let any one of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.””
  • “Love your neighbor as yourself.”

Forgive us when we don’t live out what we say we believe.

Forgive us for forgetting that “God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.”

We sang a song years ago that “Jesus loves the little children, all the children of the world,” but we’ve struggled to do that.

All the children of the world should be able to experience the local church as a refuge, a sanctuary, a safe place, and a place to call home.

Out of this conviction, we’re committed to learning the way of Jesus and standing with those experiencing hate, racism, and marginalization.

Here among us, you belong.

For something different from Eric — but more like what we usually post here — check out Walking on Water (Lessons on surrender learned while wake-skating.)

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