From Pastor Mike,
I understand, I get it. I understand why so many people intentionally stay away from church. I understand that there have been times that the church has damaged people, that it has excluded people when they most needed the support of God and the people of God, that it has presented itself as self-righteous and narcissistic, and a list of other reasons to stay away.
Unfortunately, the Church is made up of fallible people who sometimes simply forget who they are created to be. There are times that we forget that people are more important than the institution or that being right is not nearly as important as being compassionate.
Here at Good Shepherd, we fail as much and as often as any congregation. But we strive, as best we know how to remember who our God is and what he wants for this world. We try very hard to remember that grace, the love of God that call us his child in spite of our failings, is the foundation of this walk of faith.
I thank this community for always trying to live mercy and for working hard to be a family that provides a place for those who have been hurt by the church, those who have felt excluded or judged, or any that simply need to feel a part of a community. We work to welcome the struggles and questions because we don’t have all the answers.
I thank God for this congregation that struggles to find a way to welcome and to show and share the mercy of a loving God. I am thankful that our doors and hearts are open to those who are simply loved by God.
We are trying to live up to the grace of God that welcomes you “Whoever you are, However you are, Just as you are”.
See You on Sunday,