Spending time working out of the local Dunn Bros. coffee shop gives me a different perspective on the church than I would have if I spent most of my time working out of a church office. It allows me the opportunity to hear, firsthand, what unchurched people think about the church. Unfortunately, the picture is often not very flattering.
I have had way too many conversations with people who are disillusioned with the church. They have previously been hurt in the church or have found church people to be judgmental, hypocritical, and unloving. Others have expressed their concerns over the fractured picture they get of the church. It seems to them like we can’t even get along with each other, and so if we can’t get our own act together how are we supposed to help anyone else? Good question.
Now I know that just because we follow Christ does not mean that we are perfect, but this is an area where we need to do better. Jesus reminds us in John 14 that the world will know we are His followers by the way that we love one another. If that is the measuring stick, then the conversations I have been hearing are not a good sign. We need to work on this. And at The River this Sunday, this passage from John 14 will be our focus. It is called “Jesus Predicts Peter’s Denial,” but I think it is really more about loving one another. Check it out at John 14:31-38 or come on out to The River this Sunday to find out more.