This blog was originally posted at Heart, Mind, and PhemSoul
There is a mighty move of God happening.
It’s been going on for a while but it is growing in momentum! God is sending people to the very doors of God’s sanctuary all over this country. However, attachment to tradition my cause the church to miss a Golden Opportunity to show Christ’s love to those who seek it. It’s not the first time that the church has almost missed God by being stuck in tradition.
I am reminded of the Apostle Peter, a chief Apostle of the early church who would have missed the move of the Beloved if not for direct intervention from the Divine.
As Peter was on his roof in time of prayer, there were Gentiles on their way to see him to ask assistance of God and to hear the good tidings of Christ. Let us not forget this expression we now refer to as Christianity was initially another sect of Judaism. Also, the custom of the time did not allow for Jews to engage with Gentiles. However, there was a divine plan at work to smash through previous traditions and open up the gift of God to all. In response to the approaching Gentiles desire to be accepted and heard by the Divine, God set about preparing Peter’s heart to hear their request and fulfill his duty as an ambassador of the Anointed One.
God presented to Peter, while in an altered state of prayer, things that were prohibited for him to eat as a good observant Jew and encouraged him to eat them. Peter refused. This was repeated 3 times with Peter refusing each time. Finally God said to Peter one of the most profound statements in the Bible,
“…Do not call anything impure that God has made clean…”
Very shortly after this experience while Peter still pondered its meaning, the Gentile men sent to seek him by their employer arrived and asked Peter to come with them to their employer’s city and home. Because God had prepared Peter for this break from traditional regulations, he was ready to share the compassion and love of God to those who needed and desired it. So integral was his transformation that he had to declare it out loud and said to the owner of the house he entered
“You are well aware that it is against our law for a Jew to associate with or visit a Gentile. But God has shown me that I should not call anyone impure or unclean.”
Peter had a moment of clarity on that roof when he was brought face to face with the sovereignty of God. God, who imposed laws to keep God’s people safe in times of transition could change those very laws to serve the greater good. Peter now understood that. This sentiment is later reflected by the Apostle Paul who would in a letter to the Corinthians said, “Who also hath made us able ministers of the new testament; not of the letter, but of the spirit: for the letter killeth, but the spirit giveth life.”
Dearly beloveds, we are presented in our own time an opportunity to let God’s sovereignty reign. Hundreds, yay Thousands in the LGBT community seek a place to connect with the Holy One. They seek to lead godly lives and have their unions blessed by a creator who fearfully and wonderfully made them and require only that they come. Will the church continue to turn its backs on them? Will they call unclean that which God has cleansed? God has shown us the sheet full of those things once unlawful and bidden us to partake.
Peter refused 3 times before he got the message. How long will the church refuse before they realize that these beautiful souls are being sent by God as not only the answer to the prayers of the sent but also the prayers of the churches across this country who pray that God send people into God’s house?
I know change can be difficult. It was difficult for Peter as a church leader to go against the established norms based on a personal experience he had with the Divine, but eventually he knew that if he did not he would become one of those “religious” that the Beloved admonished “served with their lips but not their heart.”
There is a mighty move of God happening. It’s been going on for a while but it is growing in momentum! God is sending people to the very doors of God’s sanctuary all over this country. You may not believe its God. I most certainly do. In the end, who among us knows the “mind of God?”
For that cause I choose to error on the side of love and compassion. It is the ONE identifier Jesus left for us to recognize those who belong to God. God is Love and in the end love always wins!