What a long week! Lots of meetings, but no exciting places to report this week, and yet I've found inspiration here in Johnston County, North Carolina.
I just finished up this paper, and I had to write about longings for church - you know, the kind of things that church nerds get excited about! Some of these longings are in WMCC already. And, some of these longings are wishes. I'll let you see if you can figure out which is which.
I long for a church where following Jesus is something creative and something that is occasionally spontaneous. I long for a place where I can use my own creativity – with colors and music and pictures and words. I long for a place where we share how biblical stuff starts to breathe into our own lives. I long for a place where we talk about spiritual principles like forgiveness and compassion and mercy, and we listen to stories about how we practice or do not practice those things in our lives. I long for a place where we are each other’s inspiration. I long for a place where both the “spiritual but not religious” AND the “religious but not spiritual” can engage each other and learn from each other. I long for a community of faith that just sizzles with enthusiasm.
I think the phrase that stands out for me in all of that is "I long for a place where we are each other's inspiration." I've seen it happen. I've seen acts of kindness that can move me to tears. I've seen acts of selflessness that ooze with the love of God. I've seen acts of wisdom that lift me to higher ground.
I think of one of our church members who is no longer living and yet had the ability to transform YOU into a better person when you were in her presence.
Yeah, that's it. That's church - the place where we are each other's inspiration.