Change in the Church

15 09 2009

Hey guys,

 

So its time for our weekly Sundesmos devotional again.  Let me know if your email has changed or if I need to make any updates with your contact info.  So school has started, Patrick Swayze has passed away, the trees are starting to turn colors already, no health care reform yet, and Kanye West has made a fool of himself once again.  Wow…what fun times we’re living in!

 

For many of you I know that the last month or so has been full of transitions…

 

School.

Job.

Friends.

Life.

 

Life is full of transitions…of change.  Thank God.  Aren’t you glad that we get to experience change in our life?!  God is in the business of changing things, making things new.  “What we see is that anyone united with the Messiah gets a fresh start, is created new. The old life is gone; a new life burgeons!” (2 Cor. 5:17 MSG) 

 

God is also changing His Church.

 

For those of you who attended Western Yearly Meeting sessions this past summer, or heard about them, my prayer is that you have had time to process and pray for this organization.  I’m sure there have been many feelings swirling around about the Church and its purpose and how God’s people behave in His name.  For those of you who weren’t here and don’t have a clue what I’m talking about, I’ll be happy to fill you in on the details if you would like.  The Yearly Meeting is in crisis and is experiencing the dire need for change and desperately needs your prayers.  We’ve all had feelings about what our role in the Church should be and what changes need to be made.  I completely understand the desire to run…fast…away from anything that resembles hypocrisy and unauthentic believers, from constant conflict and ineffective ministry, from gossip and slander and pain.  It’s tiring and draining and doesn’t seem anywhere close to what God has in store for His people.  I understand that and completely agree.  Some of you have seen this Yearly Meeting and maybe even your local Meetings swirl around controversy and conflict your whole lives; that’s all I’ve experienced since I came to work here three years ago.  It’s painful and feels like such a waste.  It’s sad to see so little spiritual vitality in a group that has so much to offer our post-modern society.  For those of you who have left the YM or are debating leaving…I understand.  I had to pray a long time about whether God wanted me to stay here after Yearly Meeting sessions and continue to work for an organization that appears to not hold to the basic beliefs they say they do, an organization who blatantly disregards the blood Christ shed for me on the cross for the sake of a façade of unity and love.  I understand.  But…through that process of discernment I was reminded of a harsh quote from St. Augustine as he was talking about the Church, the Bride of Christ.  He said “the church is a whore, but she’s my mother.”  It feels like we as a Church have been unfaithful, that we have caused (and experienced) so much pain and hurt.  That we are dirty and messed up and unlovable.  But she is our mother, the one who gave birth to us.  Tony Campolo writes:

It is she who taught you about Jesus.  I want you to remember that the Bible teaches that Christ loves the church and gave himself for it (Ephesians 5:25). That’s a preeminent reason why you dare not decide that you don’t need the church. Christ’s church is called his bride (11 Con 11:2), and his love for her makes him faithful to her even when she is not faithful to him.

How we can clean up the Bride and prepare her for her Bridegroom?  I came to the conclusion that God is not finished here yet, He has not given up on WYM and He still has work for me to do here, at least for now. 

 

My ministry here seems to be changing and I feel the work of Sundesmos is changing.  If you feel like you can no longer be a part of WYM please don’t feel like that means you can no longer be a part of the Sundesmos ministry.  Sundesmos will continue to be a place where Jesus Christ is first and foremost in everything that we do.  I will be doing campus visits this fall and we’ve got a mission trip back down to Alabama already being planned for Jan. 1-8, 2010.  Remember, Sundesmos means that which binds together, a band or bond and that bond is the redemptive power of Jesus Christ. 

 

This David Crowder song has been truly helpful for me these last few weeks. 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zg-1yM6insA

The verse at the end of the video is difficult to read but it says:

I wait for the LORD, my soul waits,
       and in his word I put my hope.

My soul waits for the Lord
       more than watchmen wait for the morning,
       more than watchmen wait for the morning.

O Israel, put your hope in the LORD,
       for with the LORD is unfailing love
       and with him is full redemption.

Psalm 130:5-7

 

If you want to talk about WYM or if you have a prayer request of your own, please don’t hesitate to give me a call or write me an email.  You guys really are the reason I feel God is keeping me here at WYM.  God loves you so much and wants you experience His love and His call on your life in a truly dynamic way.

 

Blessings!  Praying for you!

 

To the King!

Katy

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