Now you are the body of Christ, and individually members of it. ~1 Corinthians 12:27
For the last few weeks in worship, we have heard members of the church talk about what this family of faith means to them. Two couples who have been part of the church for decades shared how their relationships with the church changed and deepened as they transitioned from being students, to married couples, to parents, to grandparents -- with all of the joys and challenges these different stages of life bring. A new member shared that it was the church's active presence in University Circle that inspired her to first come through the sanctuary doors. All spoke about how the opportunities they have had here to give of themselves (in many and varied ways) have brought meaning and purpose to their lives.
David Lose's words below beautifully describe the highest calling and purpose of the church. As you read, may you remember with gratitude the faith communities that have revealed to you the depth of God's love and offered ways to share that love with others.
~ Amy Starr Redwine
I think the call - or at least one of the primary calls - of the church today is to become a place where people are so rooted in the promise of God's good pleasure, reminded of their identity as God's beloved children, and affirmed in their inherent self-worth and dignity, that they can, indeed, see all those around them as similarly beloved and deserving of self-worth, dignity, and God's good pleasure. The question for a Christian, you see, isn't finally about some form of self-actualization but rather discovering that as we give ourselves away in relationship and service we find a deeper sense of self than we'd imagined possible. We are born for community and find a sense of self and meaning and purpose as we trust God's promises and give ourselves away in love. ~David Lose