The Most Important Thing in Life

My Dear Sisters and Brothers in Christ,

There is a lot going on right now.  We just hired a youth director/assistant whose name is Ron Slavin.  Ron is retired army and full of energy.  We believe Ron will have a dynamic ministry here.  If you read my last post, if you could call it that, then you know I haven't been to the gym in quite some time.  I am happy to report that I went to the gym, Planet Fitness, day before yesterday.  I feel 'buff' so who knows when I will get back there, lol.  Actually I am hoping to go later today.  The United Methodist special conference "The Way Forward" released their recommendation in a 93 page document.  Who reads a 93 page document?  As far as I can tell it endorses a 'one church" plan wherein everyone decides for themselves what they are going to support.  Conferences, clergy, churches will choose what path they want to follow as far as the ordination of homosexuals, same sex marriages, and all such contingencies present themselves.  A clergy person said to me, "we will become a congregationalist church if this goes through."  It seemed to that person that churches and clergy and even conferences would follow their conscience without regard to The Book of Discipline (or the Bible in my estimation).  There are a lot of issues to be worked out with this plan.  Churches do not always agree within themselves what they believe or support.  And that has usually been okay because we have learned to live with the tension of not always agreeeing.  That tension is a good thing because it makes us examine what we believe in and then defend it.  When people who do not believe as we do challenge us it gives us opportunity to express our faith and to be gracious to those with whom we disagree.  Now we are trying to eliminate that and I fear that it will only lead to more hostilities rather than reconciliation.  So what do we do?  We pray first and foremost and we discuss our feelings on the matter while supporting our ideas and proposals with rational reasoning.  Too much of the contentiousness that has been going on within the church has been irrational and emotional without logic or accountability.  Speaking of which, where do we get our accountability?  Who holds us responsible for our actions?  Even if we were to say it is the "Book of Discipline" we must then ask who holds the church or BOD accountable?  It all has to start somewhere doesn't it?  I am talking about the Word of God.  It seems that the authority of the Word of God is what is really being challenged in all of this.  If we can do away with the authority then we can pander to our feelings which, by the way, are more easily manipulated than a set of rules such as the Bible.  

The title of this blog is The Most Important Thing in Life and I haven't addressed that yet.  Well, here it is: SALVATION, eternal at that.  As the Bible says in Matthew  : 'What profits it a man if he gains the whole world and loses his soul?'.  There is still a lot of contemplation, soul-searching, praying, and Bible study that needs to be done concerning the church's future, but of this one thing I am sure: there is nothing more important in the whole world than salvation which is found in Jesus Christ and noone else and in no other way.  He is the Way, the Truth, and the Life.  No one comes to the Father except through Him.  It is written as is a whole lot of other commands, rules, and promises of God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.  

God loves you and so do I,

Pastor Bruce