Are we ever excused from being Christ-like because we are human?
Is there support for that in the Bible?
Do you usually excuse your fallen state instead of confess and repent of it?
Is there a happy medium between understanding our fallen state and yet rejecting it by accepting the higher calling of holiness?
Can we accept the call of holiness upon our redeemed lives and still hang out with without looking down upon the unholy people?
What would it look like?
See: http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2007/may/22.39.html before replying to this. Apologies to DH and Emily for not lending them this crutch beforehand.
We are the Church, a community where people discover who they are, who God is, and how they can help each other make significant advances against evil by bringing justice and mercy to people, by caring for the poor, widowed, and orphaned, by loving everyone in order to bring God’s Kingdom to earth.
The Church is the ONLY environment on earth where people can reach their full potential.
It’s where sin is confronted, confessed, forgiven, and redeemed.
It’s where sickness is discovered, healed, and made whole.
It’s where success is measured by the amount of love that is shared and not the amount of work done, or numbers impacted.
It’s where we realize that we are safe and yet on a dangerous mission to eradicate evil.
It’s where we realize that living abundantly does not translate into lots of stuff.
It’s where we feel the most sorrow.
It’s where we feel the most pain.
It’s where we feel the most shame.
It’s where we feel the most joy.
It’s where we feel the most love.
It’s where we feel the most hope.
It’s where we feel the most peace.
It’s where we feel the most ALIVE!
Since this is all true, and we continue to trust that it is then we should be about enabling a transformation by the power of the Holy Spirit that is of the most violent and yet tender kind that rips away the infection of sin and replaces it with the adoration of the Son.
We will create an environment where we will enable every individual: leaders, followers, and seekers, to be CONTINUALLY transformed into the likeness of Christ encouraging everyone to die to their self and rise with Christ.
We will create an environment where we will enable the community to be transformed both within the local congregation and within EVERY community into which our congregation sends ambassadors.
We will not follow culture for the sake of being relevant, but instead we will create a new culture by redeeming the redeemable, and by using the gifts of art in the forms of music, painting, drawing, digital imaging, technology development, sculptures, architecture, dance, and drama to transform culture. We will not withdraw from, but will draw in the outcast. We will not condemn, but will lovingly correct. We will not become entangled in sin, but will help free those oppressed and in bondage.
We will care for the creation that we have the opportunity to care for so that our neighbor might enjoy its fruits. This will involve reducing our waste and will involve making informed and conscious decisions about what we consume, and from whom we consume. It will also involve the giving of time, money, and talent so that no one within the Church is in need, and so that we might those with needs outside of the Church.
Now I’m not a great fan of Will Ferrell. He has his moments, but overall I usually don’t find him funny. However, fast forward to two nights ago when Kristi and I had the pleasure of seeing him in Stranger Than Fiction. What an awesome film. If you haven’t seen it then do, if you have then what does it say about how we live our lives?