A friend asked me a pertinent question regarding a blog that I wrote recently. I often write about the need for change in several of our human institutions. Among those is one that I have been a member of for the past 52 years…the church. He inquired if I desired change in the church…should not the change begin with me…’Christ in me?’ The inquiry is so thought provoking that I have pondered it for several hours. First, I think, that each of us who are christians are the church. The building is only where we gather to meet. Indeed, our church has met for the entirety of the Pandemic by Zoom…and yet had a thrilling faith experience. When I consider the church…I consider the founder of the faith…Jesus Christ. What did he visualize to constitute his community of disciples? What have we, subsequently, translated the plan of Christ…as our institution that we fondly call the church?
During my half century of attempting to follow Jesus…I have been changing from the beginning in 1969…until today. I have been a member of 4 separate churches…2 non-denominational and 2 denominational. In each of those churches I was both humbled and honored to be asked to be involved in church government. I continue to have a stone in my shoe and sadness at my inability to affect positive change. This is not an inditement regarding my christian colleagues…as they are the inspiration that propels me forward. In fact I think that each of them have the same ‘stone in their shoe,’ when it comes to being satisfied at living the faith that Christ left for us.
If we believe and accept that the comfort of faith and the vision of Gods love is not high on the suffering masses of our world…we are of all women/men…most miserable. If we do not inspire the person who is contemplating suicide due to their extreme life reversals and their abject mental suffering…we have missed the mark. If the countless millions of human beings who are suffering under our Pandemic and the economic downturn of our nation…and the fear of uncertainty…do not have checking out a church and its message of love and inclusion and safety in the midst of the storm…what are we doing?
Actually…when I write of the need for change in our churches and the renewal of desire for hurting people to want to attend…I am writing to myself…