Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.
Greatly troubled after reading Rachel Held Evans' post, "15 Reasons I Left Church" (See link in yesterday's post.), Pastor Emily writes not a rebuttal, but an invitation to our church. And, many warm and wonderful reasons why she choose to stay.
Even when those disenfranchised by legalistic churches might as, as some of her friends do, "'Why would you stay in a place that is broken beyond repair?'"
Her answer is simple. Straightforward.
"Because, I believe that with Jesus, nothing is beyond repair . . . if I walk away from the church, it will never change. But, if I stay inside and work and pray and live out my call, maybe through me and those with me, God can change the world."
What follows are points which Emily makes about our church that any of those "eight million twenty-somethings" who have dropped out of corporate worship would find appealing. Refreshing . . .
- You don't have to "check your brains at the door".
- You experience unconditional love.
- Questions are both expected and encouraged.
- It is human nature to doubt. Bring yours on! We'll tackle them together.
- "We are a 'permission-giving' church." Is there a ministry you wish to start? A class you want to teach? An outreach program that touches your heart? Share with us and go for it!
- We want you to "hear God's call and follow it".
- We "believe in the power of grace, mercy, and forgiveness and that the message of Christ can change the world". That, together, we can bring God's kingdom just that much closer to a reality in this world.
And, if these qualities stand tall and firm and lovingly in our church, certainly there are thousands more like us around the world.
With arms wide open in welcome to all God's children.
Just as they are.
And, who know that the Spirit of the living God writes not on tablets, but on the human heart.
Is there a church out there that is right for you? Will you seek one out?
Please join me in prayer:
I thank You today, Father, for the ministries of Pastor Emily and Pastor Wallace, and others like them who lead their flocks with love and compassion. Who welcome us with all our questions, our doubts, our fears, our hopes, and our dreams. Who know that where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. Amen.
You can link to Pastor Emily at Revive Worship here: http://worshipatrevive.com
Or, at www.kennesawumc.org
Psalms 131, 132 (133) or 140, 142
2 Corinthians 3:7-18