Tag Archives: neighbour

Your Forever Family In Faith

When we are hard pressed, when we are out of work, when we need something and when we want to share a significant life moment, we share it with a member of our family. For me a family is that unit of people who you willingly choose to be bonded to and who love you in return, no matter what.

Two sisters of faith Ann and Claire both from different churches had a conversation, Anne worshipped at the new Triumphant Hope Church, a lively young and busy congregation, whereas Claire went to St Luke’s a moderately lively small congregation trying to serve there comunity with dwindling resources.

Beneath the surface of their dialogue was Anne’s attitude that because she was part of a growing church they were more important and didn’t need to work closely with others. Claire was aware of the success of Triumphant Hope Church and wanted to understand and learn from them, but felt the burden of insecurity of being a smaller fish in the missional pond.

It wasn’t long ago at all, that Roman Catholic, Protestant and free churches were in competition and often in conflict with one another, and certainly on issues of women in leadership and the sacraments there is still work to be done.

A family is that unit of people who you willingly choose to be bonded to and who love you in return no matter what. I believe in a perhaps simplistic way, that if you call yourself a christian you are part of my faith family we are bonded together by blood, the blood of our saviour.

Numerous conversations go on in our churches today across the globe seasoned with a similar attitude of Anne’s, believing that their corner of the church family is the only one that has got it right. For centuries since Jesus there have been factions and splinter groups in our faith comunity. yet for the most part we hold to the revelation of the cross and tomb. So despite our religious disunity, or brokenness with one another we are still bound by something we can agree on, and that is the strongest bond that holds us together as family and perhaps is where we should begin with one another.

So when we try to score points remember they’re family, when we judge the decor or song choices, remember we are family. Let’s find a narrative a way of talking to one another out of respect for each other, out of love for our neighbour in faith.

When the weapons of point scoring and pulling the other down are put away, the witness to the world is immense and powerful, we demonstrate the best for what family can be. The collection of individuals though different, choosing to be together for the betterment of each other.

As I sat in a room of clergy from several local christian denominations who all wanted to share communion together, there was a genuine sadness over the catholic preist being unable to partake because of religious catholic rules. It was the methodist minister who suggested that they had a love feast instead, an ancient service dating back hundreds of years, of sharing testimony, or eating bread and water, and remembering the bond of family. Collectively they found a way to accommodate one another out of respect and love. May this image of faithful inclusivity season your thoughts and flavour your conversation with all members of our family today.

Go with God. 🙂

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