The Way of Life / The Way of Love – How do we become a school for learning to love? How do I teach my congregation and myself to love God, love our neighbor, love our enemies, love ourselves and love all of God’s creation? In loving our family, our neighbors, ourselves and creation we grow in our love for God. I can only provide opportunities to learn; I can only set the table, I cannot force people to sit at the table or participate. I am not always correct, my way is not the only way. St James is very good at loving their community as shown through our Community Suppers, Literacy Camp and Albion Community Garden. We have opportunities to grow in being kind, accepting and supportive of the other, of the stranger, of the one who does not believe or think as we do, who does not look like we do or behave as we do. Brian McLaren suggests that we need to move from seeing Christianity as doctrine to seeing it as a way of life; that we need to believe in a God of love rather than a God of violence; and that we need to change from organized religion to organizing religion. We learn to love in steps. 1. We learn to trust. 2. We learn to be generous and kind. 3. We learn there are rules.
4. We learn to love our neighbors and family. 5. We learn to love and to be inclusive of everyone.
Brian McLaren also suggests that there are many ways to read the Bible but suggests that we move from an innocent/Literal interpretation of the Bible to an Integral/Literary interpretation of the Bible where we look for the meaning in the stories rather than rules. For example David was able to kill Goliath and obtain a victory for the Israelites, but much later King David is not allowed to build the temple because he is a man of bloodshed.
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Rev. Darlene Kuhn,
A word from Mother Darlene