I experienced something amazing on this past Good Friday. I attended a “Community Service” which was six churches coming together to remember the sacrifice Jesus made on our behalf.
Here is what was amazing….out of six pastors no one introduced themselves…..no one promoted their individual church, didn’t even mention their church name. Everyone just took part in the service and focused on Jesus and everyone worshiped together.
Over the majority of my life I have been a worshiper of Jesus yet over and over I have witnessed the division of Christians. I’m saddened to acknowledge that I have been a part of it. I got involved with the over studying of the Bible to prove one thought is right and another wrong. As if I could really understand it all.
Don’t get me wrong, I love the scriptures and the comfort and boundaries they give me. The error occurs when we use the scripture to divide followers of Jesus rather than to unite us. That’s why I was so blessed last Good Friday – I witnessed a beautiful display of unity in the Christian community of Auburn.
The older I get the more I realize there is much mystery involved with Christianity. That bothers a lot of people. My personal conviction is that there will not be one person who enters heaven with perfect doctrine, but every Christian will enter with Christ’s perfect love and forgiveness.
So my faith has become like a child’s. For me it really comes down to these two truths:
Jesus loves me this I know, for the Bible tells me so.
along with Jesus’s words in Matthew 22:35-40
“‘You must love the Lord your God with all your heart,
all your soul, and all your mind.’
This is the first and greatest commandment.
A second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’
The entire law and all the demands of the prophets are based
on these two commandments.”
So I’ve learned to rest in His love for me and focus on my love for Him. When I do those two things it is easy to love my neighbor as myself.
I now read my Bible anticipating an encounter with Jesus. Instead of analyzing it like a textbook, I am back to reading it as a love letter. And so He intimately speaks to me using the scriptures, His creation, and that small still voice, the whisper of the Holy Spirit.
When I was a child, I spoke and thought and reasoned as a child.
But when I grew up, I put away childish things.
Now we see things imperfectly, like puzzling reflections in a mirror,
but then we will see everything with perfect clarity.
All that I know now is partial and incomplete,
but then I will know everything completely, just as God now knows me completely.