“Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. Indeed, by faith…. By faith…. By faith… therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight and the sin that clings so closely, and let us run with perseverance the race that is set before us…” Hebrews 11-12
You see as we immerse ourselves in the faith that we have been taught, and the faith that continues to grow in us, and the faith that our still speaking God calls us to, we come out of our comfort zones, and live together as missional people, called by God. Missional people are people who are putting God first in our lives, taking care of God’s world, taking a stand for what is right, and not worrying about what our neighbors think. Missional people are people who show love and mercy for our brothers and sisters in Christ, no matter where they live or what color their skin is. Missional people are people who give off the top and don’t worry, because God will always be with them. Missional people are people who care deeply about one another, not just those people they know, but all of God’s children. Missional people are people who love unconditionally, who stand up for justice, who find God in unexpected places. Missional people are people who welcome everyone, and learn to love and respect those that are different than them. Missional people have fun and laugh and know that God loved everyone.
When we immerse ourselves in the promises that were made for us at baptism, and that we made for ourselves at confirmation or when we joined the church, and that we continue to make every time we call upon God, and live the faith, as disciples, apostles, followers of Jesus Christ, we are blessed.
I am proud of the work as disciples that we have been doing, but we still have a ways to go. I believe that when we treat all with equality; that we love without conditions; then we are living into what God wants. I think and believe we have a ways to go yet, that we are not truly living into our core values. We have been blessed. I know that opening ourselves up for change is hard, and challenging, but God has called us to listen. When we listen to God, and put God first, the rest of our lives make sense. It is hard to say no, when we want to say yes to the world. But if we put God first, when we immerse ourselves in the faith and love of Jesus Christ, we will have all that we need.
I know that we will be “changed for the good,” as the song from “Wicked” goes, we when look each other in the eyes, when we live missionally, when we live our core values.
I am so blessed to be part of Grace UCC…