The Redevelopment Team continued our journey with a meeting on August 23rd. Our assignment for the day was to discuss who Jesus was, and how we learned that. Members shared their stories, and Pastor Katie reminded us that talking about our faith at church with fellow believers is practice for talking about our faith out in the world. It is important to remember that our faith journey is life long; we should not give up on ourselves or others. Everyone’s faith journey is unique,

Other ideas shared by the team as a result of the discussion included:

  •  There are “seasons” in our faith journeys, during which God provides what we need to grow when we need it.
  • Jesus provides comfort and challenge to us during our faith journeys.
  • Shared personal stories and experiences help others understand who Jesus is, so we need to speak of our own faith journey courageously, for the sake of others. We should also speak of our own stories with truth and authenticity.
  • If there is a Bible story that relates to your faith journey, sharing that story is a way to talk about your faith.
  • Our comfort zone for talking about our faith will expand with patience, grace, and if our space is perceived as (and is) a safe place in which to do so. Can Grace become a safe space where we can be authentic and vulnerable and explore our faith without fear?
  • How can we meet people where they are with compassion and grace?  How can we foster conversations in which we share our faith?

Our continuing study of Acts 2:42-3:10 showed us: 

  • What is God up to?  God is creating community, providing for needs, and following through on God’s promises.  
  • What is the early church learning?  The way to grow and create church is by providing for needs, creating community, eating together in homes, caring for one another, being fearless, and looking at and listening to each other. As a result, authentic relationships developed.
  • What do we learn?  Authentic relationships are key to building the church and a good place to start is where the apostles started.  

Although the Redevelopment Team is specifically tasked with discerning Grace’s future, all of us are undergoing Redevelopment together! Please join us in thinking about the questions we considered this week - Who do we think Jesus is, and how do we know that?

Above all, give thanks this week for the church, where we can create an environment in which we can be authentic with each other, and explore issues of justice and sustainability.

Thanks be to God.  

 - Barbara Artuso