Hope #3: To Have a Reputation for Godliness and Humility
We are rejoiced in by some and criticized by others.
If you ask about Redemption Church in the Tri State it’s hard to predict what you’ll get. It ranges from a bunch of beer swilling, cussing, anarchist that hate women and homosexuals to a Jesus loving, Bible preaching, and sinner reaching community of Christians. Almost every organization that gets big enough or gains a level of influence will experience this response. We are rejoiced in by some and criticized by others.
I am extremely pleased with what Jesus is creating among us and the type of church I lead, but there is a growing uneasiness that we grow up a bit. I have in mind 2 areas these days. Both are at least an indirect result of my example and leadership. The areas are immaturity and harshness. I’ve been immature in speech and overly harsh with others. I pray that this will not stay true for me or us. There have been situations and decisions I and we have made that I’d like to get back. God is maturing me and softened me by his grace.
God has blessed us with some unbelievably mature, godly, wise, and sacrificial people who I am learning from as well. Men and women who are mature enough to give up their preferences and who happily forebear with the immaturity of others for the good of the gospel and Redemption Church. Men and women who don’t start fights nor become divisive over theology or secondary issues, but at the same time aren’t afraid to fight when necessary.
I hope we become more and more known for our deep love of God and our commitment to pure lives of integrity.
I hope that we’ll become less and less known for our Christian liberties. I hope we become more and more known for our deep love of God and our commitment to pure lives of integrity. I hope we become less and less known for our ability to chew up and spit out other Christians who don’t say it our way or have sloppy theological views. I hope we become more and more known for our repentance of error and being gracious and kind when dealing with others in theirs. We’ll continue to have weaknesses and even errors, but I’m striving for the day when even our enemies have to say, “those people love Jesus, walk like Jesus, and tell people about Jesus”.