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As we prepare to begin a new series of devotional thoughts in a couple of weeks, we are going to do sometime a little different. For the next two issues we will be telling you about some books by our Missional Wisdom leaders that will be published soon.
Together: Community as a Means of Grace
by Larry Duggins
Over the past several months, I have had the opportunity to travel to a number of cities to meet with people who are interested in repurposing a church building to be used to connect with the neighborhood in new ways.
The Missional Community as a Means of Grace, Week 9
by Andrea Lingle
It was a late summer Sunday morning. All my kids had been delivered to their Sunday school classes at the Methodist church we attend.
My oldest was given his third grade Bible at the morning service. I showed him mine before we left for church. I took his picture. My second wore a dazzling, jeweled dress. Her golden blonde hair isn’t combed. Third-child-second-son has just moved out of the nursery area. He is both proud and nervous. I assure him that he will be fine. Baby wails as I close the door of the nursery.
"...Are you going on to perfection? …Do you expect to be made perfect in love in this life?”
These are a couple of the questions each clergy answers in the United Methodist Church before becoming ordained.
Jesus Christ practiced radical hospitality.
What does it mean to practice “radical hospitality?”
For Christ and the disciples, it meant relying upon the hospitality of others to fulfill their service and missional life. Within three of the four Gospels, Christ givesauthority to the disciples and sends them out without means or resources, asking them to rely upon the hospitality of strangers to fulfill their mission (Matthew 10:6-16, Mark 6:6b-13, Luke 9:1-6).
We should never underestimate the power of showing up.
I serve at a local United Methodist Church in East Dallas and have the humble opportunity to lead different classes, studies, and programs. Every week there is a Wednesday Bible study where a group of around ten to twelve older adults come and engage in discussion around scripture.
Whoever you are, wherever you are, and whenever you are will affect how you see the world. We live in a tribal world. We are white and black, gay and straight, male and female, religious and “none,” introvert and extrovert, “in a relationship” or single, coffee or tea, Instagram or Reddit. We are a diverse species and we all fear invisibility, so we draw lines around ourselves. This is me. These are mine. This is what I believe.
Have you ever done a logic puzzle? You get a list of clues, make a grid, and figure out, through astounding feats of intellect and crossing off of boxes, who sat next to whom and what color shirt they had on and what they ate.
The Missional Community as a Means of Grace, Week 2
by Andrea Lingle
I am fascinated by words. Specifically names. If you have ever read a decent fantasy novel, you will have a firm grasp of how important names are. Names give you power over a thing. You should never tell anyone your true name, or they will have power over you. If you know a thing, you will know its name. Good stuff.
There is power in a circle.
There is tension in a circle: an infinite number of points presses out from a central point of unity. There is balance in a circle: each of the infinite points is equally distant from the center of the circle.