St. Andrew’s Hespeler: Living in Christ, Sharing his Love.
St. Andrew’s Hespeler Presbyterian Church has what I think of as a motto or a slogan. It is emblazoned on a plaque at the main entrance of the church and often printed on such things as letterhead. It is, I know, a slogan that means a lot to some of the people at the church – a slogan that has encouraged us to stretch towards worthwhile goals like getting more involved in our community – reaching out to people and helping to meet needs.
So I hardly want to mess with a good thing. This slogan really has helped make us who we are.
But I do sometimes wonder if it is enough given the challenges being faced by the church in these days.
It is possible to read that slogan in a completely non-challenging way. It is kind of like being in favour of mom and apple pie. Of course these are good thing and we are in favour of them but are they really pushing us to be more and do more in the name Jesus?
The other night, as we were engaged in our Long Range Planning exercise, I was struck by a thought though. That motto can only seem safe and non-threatening when we leave it abstract – when we don’t think about what it means practically to live in Christ in this world, when don’t consider how we share his love are with whom.
So I’ve started to think that we need to dig deeper into that slogan and map out what it means. What if we were to expand it like this?
Living in Christ …alongside people who think differently from us.
… in the workplace, at school, in the mall.
… when we don’t have all the answers.
… when we’re sick or lost or grieving.
… when we’re surrounded by people who practice other religions?
Sharing his love … with those facing mental challenges.
… with those who scare us (for whatever reason).
… with people who have different taste in music or in worship styles.
… with those who are bringing change into our lives.
I’m just starting to think about this and these expansions are just off the top of my head. I’d love to know what people think about it – am I on the right track?