the absolute inclusivity of the Good News

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The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases,
    his mercies never come to an end;
 they are new every morning;
    great is your faithfulness.
“The Lord is my portion,” says my soul,
    “therefore I will hope in him.” – Lamentations 3:22-24

This week’s “Friday post” is going to be a hybrid set of thoughts from a busy week. There’s been a lot going on, but it is a quality of busy that is worthwhile, purposeful, and grounded in my identity as a follower of Jesus, all very much a product of my intention to “live faith out loud.”

double-u double-u double-u church dot com:
1-Fullscreen capture 382018 71004 PM

First, our church is in the middle of a technology revamp. There is a new membership interface, updated financial software, and – finally – a more relevant web presence. Now that the new site is up and running – www.wakeforestpres.org – I quite like it, so I have sampled a few screenshots to share here (we have more wonderful staff than just these three, you’ll have to go to the website to see).

The reason this fits today’s post is how critically important it is that the church interface with the world in a meaningful and clear way. There is so much out there that signals the wrong message, so many churches and people who – as Jesus once said – “shut the door of the kingdom of heaven in people’s faces” (Matthew 23:13)and I believe it is a significant element of our calling to make sure that the authentic good news of Jesus is both evident and accessible.

The good news of Jesus is for absolutely everyone – EVERYONE! We want to do everything we can to promote such an invitational, inclusive, authentic message.

Habitat for Humanity:
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Then, and in an extension of this important task of communicating good news, this week the mission team at WFPC hosted a creative Habitat for Humanity event. We partnered with St. John’s Episcopal Church in a “virtual auction,” with the goal of raising $15,000 for the latest community build. The final tally isn’t in yet, but it looks to be somewhere in the neighborhood of $25,000.

This initiative is especially helpful for us as a church coming off a week where we mourned the loss of one of our teens; it’s timely and healthy to focus outside of ourselves, to reach out in mission and with compassion. This is the imperative of the gospel, this is the thrust of Christ’s invitation. Love always reaches out.

Beautiful Spring:

1-IMG_4433Finally, Wake Forest is beginning to witness the first evidences of springtime. There is an incandescent buoyancy to the morning light, a few of the trees have started to bloom, and we are experiencing cool, clear days bursting with sunshine and promise.

The amazing redemptive power of hope is literally saturating the air around us, infiltrating the trees and penetrating the soil. So – while I most certainly am busy – I feel a divine urgency to be reflective, to be still, and to contemplate the deep truth of resurrection.

Peace, blessings, and the beauty of promise – DEREK

 

 

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