On Sunday morning I’m going to wake up, feed my kids breakfast and do the mad, crazy, Sunday morning dash to church. It’s usually packed with bickering and stress until we walk through those church doors. But we made it. We showed up again.
When we walk through those doors, we will be walking through the same doors that the person sitting next to us, behind us, in front of us and beside us all walked. We come from all different backgrounds, all different places. But we come.
And just like every other Sunday, we will sing songs, shake hands, listen to scripture and share our life’s latest over some coffee. We will do all those churchy things we do. And just like every other Sunday I will know how different we all are and how diverse our convictions may be. We usually don’t talk about those things on a weekly basis , but we all know they are there.
Based on conviction and based on our interpretation of the Bible-
We vote differently.
We spend our money differently.
We spend our free time differently.
We watch different movies.
We read different books.
We spend time with different types of people.
We drink different things.
We eat different things.
We live in different places.
We raise our children differently.
We do life differently.
All these things come from those deep places within us that have come to shape who we are. It’s how we were taught. Or maybe it’s what we eventually figured out on our own. It’s our life experiences. It’s being true to the places we have come into. All these things are important and we respect that about each other.
I know you don’t have a problem owning a gun to protect yourself.
I have a huge problem with violence of any kind.
It’s how we read scripture differently. But they are both true convictions.
We could use so many different examples to prove this. How I have experienced and understood the God of the Bible is not likely how you have. I may not agree with you and it will be unsettling. It’s uncomfortable to be around people who make us think about why we believe what we believe. It’s much easier to go find a place where people think like us. So much easier to breathe and rest and keep moving in those spaces.
There will always be those things that divide us. Churches are splitting all the time. This will never change. Always something.
Today, it’s the struggle to worship together when we all have different convictions about sexuality, specifically, homosexuality.
So this is where I am. I will be up front and will not hide my conviction.
I don’t know.
I don’t know exactly what the Bible says about homosexuality. YES, I’ve read those verses. BUT, I’ve read so many verses in the Bible that don’t make sense. There are so many things that aren’t black and white. I am not a scholar and I can’t tell you all the cultural reasons why things happened the way they did and when they did. There are SO many areas of gray for me. This is not the first and most certainly won’t be the last. And I’m still seeking the truth, it’s an ever unfolding process.
I will stand on this.
If there is one thing about Jesus that is clear to me is that he called us to love each other. He spent his time with the marginalized and continually called out the religious for all their certainty about who was in and who was out. He asked us to love. Love Him. Love each other. And that, that is clear. I really really want to be more like Jesus. And when I look at Jesus, this is what I see…
He loved everyone.
He told us to put down our stones and look into our own hearts.
He was constantly letting the people in who everyone thought should be out.
And for now, that’s all I need.
So on Sunday I will walk through those same doors that I always do. I will sit and worship with the same folks I always do. We will not agree on many of our convictions, but we will make space for each other.
Let keep making space.
(You may be tired of hearing this stuff from me and that’s fine. I do get it. But it just continually rattles around in my head and in my heart and I need to work it all out.)