So this year i’ll be attending week 1 of New wine’s yearly conference also known as “united” and it’s been quite a journey leading up to this point. 6 months ago i wasn’t even sure if i was going with my church this year, so the fact i’m able to shows the goodness of God and the wonderful people he has placed in my life.
Not only has the time been leading up to this been a real challenge, but it’s also been a real change of direction in my journey with the Lord. See, i wasn’t raised in the church, and there’s very few members of my family that do attend church at all, so all i’ve known is from the church i came to Christ in, which was a Church of England Anglican church with some charismatic elements, and it’s all I’ve known till fairly recently.
And although this is still my preferred style of worship, i do not think it’s the only one that matters. See i’m also a part of our Methodist churches preaching program, and i’ve been to a number of different churches and denominations through out my Christian life, and i’ve really been thinking about elitism among the denominations.
When i say elitism, i don’t mean in terms of theology, because that’s something i may never have the answer too, and i don’t think that all theology is correct (and stay tuned for that post coming in the future) so i will not pick out a denominations theology until i can say i completely understand it. No i mean a lack of communication and community between denominations.
I truly believe that different denominations are not a bad thing in themselves, i am of the thought that if you want to worship the Living God in a different way to me, that’s fine, who am i to tell you you’re worshipping God wrong (unless it is literally un-biblical, but that’s a different can of worms that i won’t be opening today) and more “church” in the towns surely isn’t a bad thing right? My issue comes in when we call into question the value of actually uniting the churches, and in turn, bringing the kingdom to our towns.
Jesus told is in the book of Matthew (12:25) “Every kingdom divided against itself will be ruined, and every city or household divided against itself will not stand.” And if we as the body don’t stand together, then how can he hope to share the true glory of the kingdom of God? I’m not asking for everyone to agree on theology, on how a service should run, on communion, on who is in leadership, or any of the other big issues that we can let get in the way. But one thing i’d like for the church to do, and i mean all of us, is to agree that bringing his kingdom to earth and sharing the good news and being united as the Body of Christ is far more important than anything we may disagree with about the other denominations.
No denomination is perfect. Because at the end of the day we are all broken people. And that’s exactly why we needed saving from the grip on sin in the first place. If we were perfect we wouldn’t need the forgiveness of the father. But we’re not, and cutting ourselves off from others because we don’t agree with the way they worship or do a service, isn’t a crime, but it is a shame. Maybe one day we can all be united as the body despite our disagreements, at least that is my prayer.
The only time i really see all the churches stand together in my town is on Good friday, and don’t get me wrong, i love that we can put that aside for one of the most important days of our faith, and actually stand together under one cross for that day. But we are all covered by the blood of Jesus, why do we only really come together then? Why not more often? We are the people of the kingdom, and we should not just unite on this one day, but as much as we can, we talk about being in community with others, in an effort to bring them to Christ, but how can we hope to do that when we can’t even stay in community with each other?
I truly believe that we should remember that, we as the church, be it Methodist, Pentecostal, evangelical, Anglican or any other denomination, are all part of the kingdom of the living God, and despite our flaws and our disagreements, that we should stand on a united front, and be together in trying to show this broken sinful world, that we are the church, and that we know the way to forgiveness through the one that forgave us, and that even when we disagree, we never doubt our salvation and we are different parts of the same body, rather than a divided house.
This weeks post has been on my heart for a number of weeks so i’m glad i’ve finally had the chance to share it with you, and i’d love to hear your thoughts on this topic, and i’m sure there’s something i’ve missed, you can join our facebook group here or follow me on twitter here and if you’re interested you can find a link to my instagram here or just leave a comment! But as always…
Thank you for reading and May God Bless you.