Hymns, Heartbreak, and Healing
Fractured hearts and ragged emotions.
Some in our church are hurt and angry and scared.
Because we’re going through change.
Last month we switched from two Sunday morning services–one traditional and one contemporary–to one single service.
Generations no longer divided.
And our pastor believes this is of God. That He is leading us on a path to as yet unknown places.
That we are to no longer be “them” and “us.”
But one family. Together. Generation upon generation upon generation.
He opened his message Sunday like this:
We’re in the series entitled, To Save a Family, and this is the fourth in that series today. And the message is entitled, Strong Families Raise Good Decision Makers.
And here’s that message. (He holds up a sheaf of papers.) I’m going to pass it around if you’d like to read it because I’m not gonna preach it today.
All I am is a messenger . . .
And before the messenger brings the message that God has today–which the messenger has no idea what it’s going to be . . .
And he asked for whoever would to come and lay hands on the him and pray before he spoke.
He usually has notes. Not that he reads them word for word, but he usually knows where he’s going.
And God was in the house.
His message encompassed every sticky characteristic we’ve looked at so far.
Simple: We are a family in Jesus.
Unexpected: That’s an understatement.
Concrete and credible: He shared specific instances where older Christians had mentored him from a young age, and how he had often shown up in college classes “drunk” or “stoned,” and how he finally gave everything over to Jesus. And how the last two years had been maybe the hardest of his whole life and how his heart was breaking over other breaking hearts who were/are attacking him with anger and anonymous postcards. And how he didn’t want to go through this and how he tried to leave to the point of “shopping” and interviewing elsewhere. And how God would not let him run.
And it was very, very emotional (chapter 5 of Made to Stick by the Heath boys.) You will hear that if you listen. I posted the podcast link below.
Some of his stick-to-me points included:
A house divided can never stand.
If change does not come for us spiritually, we will die.
Young people: Lights and guitars and current music is not the way into the Kingdom. It’s a relationship with Jesus.
Silent generation: The way to the kingdom is not through symbols and hymns. It’s through Jesus.
We are never at a place in our lives where change is not necessary.
Some unseemly parts of the body have been exposed. We’ve got to come together and heal.
The cross is in us.
It’s time to become we.
We need each other. All of us. To deny ourselves. To follow Jesus. And go into all the world. We may not know what that path looks like or where exactly it will lead us on the way to our final home. But we don’t travel alone.
I listened to the whole message again today. It’s sticky. And I think it’s a message for the whole body of Christ.
Pastor Bill Beachy
Trinity United Methodist Church
Bridget Chumbley hosts a One Word Blog Carnival on Healing today, where you can find many posts on that topic.