Sometimes we confuse issues with causes and that tends to lead us in the wrong direction. We end up championing the cause and not dealing with the issue. This past week we have seen a good example of that very thing. You might say it was three days of agony and soul searching in an effort to bring to a conclusion an issue that had become a cause. The United Methodist Church finally put the issue on the table and the response was as expected. There are so many adjectives that can apply here. Bitterness is a word that is not strong enough here. The better word would would be rancor and adding to that disappointment, hurt, confusion, fear, uncertainty, a full range of emotions all held in check by prayer and Christian tolerance. There have been post Conference comments on FaceBook and other social media that indicate the issue is still on the table for many United Methodists after the recent special called gathering this past February.
The issue that became a cause? The current deep conflict within The United Methodist Church around issues of human sexuality. A conflict that is decades old is still not settled in the hearts of the people, still weighs heavy on their minds, and we find the door still not open but just slightly ajar. Every possible argument, for or against, has been run up the flag pole and the rope is quite frayed my now. I believe that the wrong issue which has grown into a cause has damaged this denomination. Having been a member of the Methodist Church for many years I am sadden by all of this. There was a song many years ago that had a lyric “the answer my friend is blowing in the wind”, Peter Paul and Mary. When I let the wind in my mind die down, the answer I hear is the real issue, Holy Living. What exactly is holy living? How do I live a holy life? We must separate ourselves from sin and any evils that keep us from having a relationship with God. We must seek an infilling of the holy spirit because we can only live a holy life through the presence of the Spirit in our lives. We are reminded that our God is holy and he calls us to be holy. 1 Peter 1:16 Leviticus 19:2),
There are scriptures that address human sexuality. I am not going to list those but will say, that they are not supportive of certain lifestyles and do not meet the intent of living a holy life and we must understand that apart from God this is impossible. We are commanded to love all people just as Jesus did. No one should be turned away from God’s table. There is a requirement we all must meet. It is not a rule, it is not a church thing, denominational thing. It will not be found in agendas, causes or any other place. It is a God Thing, a relationship with God based on repentance and Holy Living.
I will be away from the pew for awhile due to needed medical procedures. I do not at this time know at what date the Pew will return.
Life is Good