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Let me tell you what I saw on Sunday.
Let me tell you what I saw as I sat on stage with the worship band at church.
I saw a miracle. A miracle of hope.
I saw a parade of different, a line of people as disparate as could be walk to the front of our church and choose Jesus.
This week the internet has been crammed full of articles and blog posts that tell me that within our church, which identifies as evangelical, the people should be sharply divided. That the white men should be seated on one side and all the rest of us should be seated on the other side, both groups shooting looks of anger and disappointment toward the other.
That’s not what I saw.
I saw, instead, person after person, so many people, walk to the front to be baptized.
I saw Caucasian American, African American, Asian American, Latino American, old, young, men and women all die to their old life and begin their new life in Christ.
And I saw Caucasian American, African American, Asian American, Latino American, old, young, men and women all come to their feet and clap and cheer and whoop and holler for them.
All while trying to play a complicated part on a B-3 organ. Not the best plan for playing well.
Yet I couldn’t take my eyes off that baptistry.
Because what I saw on Sunday?
What I saw was hope.
Not perfection. Until Jesus comes back, there will never be perfection here on this earth.
The Church has been responsible for so many atrocious acts over the centuries. Nothing has changed. We are all still human and I know there was still a lot of pain and grief inside of the people in our church. We will still hurt each other and have to apologize and forgive. But there was also a lot of healing.
I saw people set aside, just for that moment, how differently they viewed the world and instead choose to cheer each other on toward Jesus.
I know we often do a horrible job of loving people, but every once in a while we get it right.
This Sunday, I saw us get it right.
I saw that parade of different and I saw the Church urging them on. I saw people focused on Jesus. I saw a miracle of hope.
So don’t give up on the Church.
Take a step back for a moment if you need to and take a deep breath.
But don’t give up on her. She is still the Body of Christ.
She needs us. She needs us to keep reminding her how to love those who are different.
Keep praying for her. Keep standing up against her when she becomes hurtful and standing up for her when others try to hurt her. Keep serving and worshiping with her. As a part of her.
Just keep taking one step at a time, one more step alongside this Church that is loved by Jesus.
After all, if Jesus hasn’t given up on us yet, perhaps we shouldn’t give up on each other either.