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October 4, 2020 1:57 am
In this final discussion, Lieutenant Harvin and Commissioner Howell discuss practical applications for welcoming diversity into our homes, church’s and communities.
Hi this is breathing welcome to the Salvation Army's words of life. Welcome back to the words of life.
I'm Cheryl Guillot and Bernie Dake writing in this final discussion between Commissioner Willis Howell and the tenant James Harmon to discuss practical things we can do in our homes and our churches to welcome diversity in our own lives in all of the talks that have happened in the last few months I've heard things where people say something like well I'm colorblind I don't see color.
I think I kind of understand what they're trying to say but unfortunately I find that to be kind of ill-informed if we are created in God's image and all of us are different.
We celebrate that diversity.
I think it's about appreciating the beauty of all of God's creation and the diversity in that what we'd like to hear your thoughts on this series and what are some of the takeaways you've learned through the series and what advice do you have for other listeners.
If you are willing send us an email to email@example.com or call 1-800-229-9965. Today we are here again with the words of life, speaking about unity here with Commissioner Howell. Yes, today will be talking about practical applications on diversity and unity in our homes and our churches and in our communities what does that look like in the home. I can't address what it should look like in a secular home. If I can frame any thoughts I have in the context of what I think believers should be doing and so in the case of the home. We have plenty of instruction in Scripture as to what life should be like there is this giving and forgiving with one another.
We don't always agree we are sharpened we are enhanced we are certainly stretched in a family context. When we are first to reckon with and wrestle with ideas, opinions, views that we might not share right off the bat instead. We have an attitude of think about that. So I think that is a good model for the Christian home. If Christ is at the center.
Christ needs to pervade and have this umbrella affect over the family so that everything is done under that sort of an operating system, I believe, along with that Christ being in the home. We also need to understand that it is the Holy Spirit convicts and shows right where we need to be honed where we need to weed out things and so self-assessment or question would be when's the last time somebody not a home that doesn't share ideologies doesn't share our culture or experiences being open and honest with ourselves seem okay maybe just maybe I'm only surrounding myself with people who think look, sound like Mia. And if that's the case then was unethical yet it is not biblical and were were falling short in that manner, and so this where I talk about the last episode of pausing and the pain right imposing and the pain with people is the only way we can have true empathy, not just a sympathetic moment where we say okay while you that that looked like it hurt but know, let me walk with you in it invite you in the home.
Let's talk about it.
That's honestly I truly believe that's how we are going to truly emulate Christ to the world.
Pain in and of itself is not necessarily negative.
We know is raising their hands they will have some pain please. But pain can be useful.
Pain can teach lessons and where we are currently in. In this culture. In this United States culture and we've said before, this is not necessarily where everybody is who's listening to our broadcast their cultures are going be very different but speaking from where we are currently our country, our culture, and yes our church is going through significant pain right now. Can you imagine what a tragedy it would be if we wasted the pain you just for the sake of being numbed or this this desire to go back to normal whatever normal is or was so pain can be helpful in that it teaches you only have to burn your hand in the fire. Once you realize I'm not put my hand in there again so pain has taught us a lesson. The pain here that were wrestling with. I think does bring us back to how do I treat my brother in Christ.
How do I treat a fellow believer.
How do I treat someone who doesn't look like me someone who doesn't vote like me someone who has a completely different set of ideologies and philosophies. We still should be building relationships that as Christians we are clearly called to be salt and light.
Christ told us that he was the light of the world as long as he was in the world will he's no longer in the world. So he's past that responsibility to us as the body of Christ in the world. We are now the light of the world. If all we do is keep our light in our little enclosed churches and chapels and corn. Everything else is talking about how wonderful it is that we have mining here and then assumes we go out want to hide it that that doesn't help the world unite always will push back the darkness. Darkness cannot withstand like culture right now is trying to impose a darkness on the church and as long as we stay home within our four walls.
Refusing to shine the light of Christ into it and it appears that the darkness wins when we shine the light of Christ by living the life of Christ and that's only done or I should say is best done through relationships with people who are not like us. That's when people start to wonder what's what is it about him. I can't really put my finger on it but she's different we are called to live that life is to exemplify Jesus and everything that we do every fabric of our day has to be to point people to Jesus through our actions, words, I spent many nights a week thinking about these very things. Thinking about how can we bring true change, but it comes with a self-assessment of acknowledging that the church we haven't exemplified Christ and will need to do a self-assessment with ourselves, how would somebody experience me doesn't look like me. How do I come off the people who don't have the same cultural background doesn't have the same political party because we're about bringing unity whenever we place our own ideologies above someone else and say that they are less than that is superiority. We believe that we are better than and that does not belong because Paul says be humble. It is the thing that is diametrically opposed to pride is humility. I think we have to come to grips with in our home in our churches and our communities that we have to establish humility as believers we have to address within ourselves, we have to say.
Where have I fallen short.
As believers together.
The only way this will be achieved. I'm convinced is forced to continuously and regularly model ourselves after Jesus we have the pattern. I can't speak about you but I can speak about me. I still have rough edges. I still have sharp corners that the Lord is working with and working on in order to shape me evermore to be like Jesus. The world will never achieve that kind of unity. I don't care what the politics are. I don't care what the world you is I don't care who comes up with whatever plan am not saying people shouldn't do that, but unless and until it is centered on the person and the values of Christ himself. True unity will not be achieved. Certainly in the world, let alone in the church we are driven each and every day to be more and more like Jesus. Understanding that where we have fallen short in the in the past where you are acknowledging and taking the actions in our heart. Bringing up for Jesus saying we understand we repent from that and move forward. I have seen pastors believers allowed themselves to become politically petty and I've been so disheartened at that and I pray for our leaders are preachers, teachers to not do that to not allow politics to make you petty but to simply be persuaded by Christ to follow him to look at his teachings, his actions is his words in and see how he lived it out instead of seeing the church in the kingdom through a political lens look at culture look at politics look at the world through kingdom lens and I think there is the subtle temptation for believers to get that backwards. I think we want our politics to inform our faith as opposed to our faith holding sway and informing our politics. Politics can be so all-consuming and and to borrow the words of Christ give to Caesar what Caesars do what you need to do honor your civic responsibility but give to God the things that are God and as believers.
Together we given our lives.
We have given ourselves. We have submitted to a calling that we believe that he's placed on our lives and we and others like us want to give God what belongs to him and that's ourselves and everything else comes somehow after that it needs to be informed by the offering that we made a commission. I just want to thank you for being here, and if I could ask you to pray for us would be greatly appreciated.
Let's pray together. So father here we are just two of us on this particular broadcast two of us on this particular screen but joined by a countless number of those who are watching or listening, uniting our hearts in prayer, there is that theme of unity again, we unite ourselves father to your purpose and to help bring your kingdom here on earth. The values of the kingdom here on earth that your will would be done here on earth as it is in heaven.
That's work on our part. It's not just a simple prayer that we tossed to the ceiling. It's not just a simple set of words that we recite every now and again in our churches. Lord help us to be about bringing up their down here in our attitudes and our behaviors in our words in our relationships.
And yes, in the unity between the church model to this very aching world.
So father I pray your continued blessing on all who were listening, I pray your blessing on all who are watching. I pray your blessing on James in his ministry and asked that you would watch over him and continue to keep your anointing in your hand on his life. Father, we commit ourselves to you yet again and asked the people who interact with us would not see us that we hear and since your very presence. We ask this in Jesus name. The Salvation Army's mission doing the most good means helping people with material and spiritual needs to become a part of this mission every time you give to the Salvation Army visit Salvation Army USA.org to offer your support and love to hear from you. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 1-800-229-9965 or write us at PO Box 29972, Atlanta, GA 30359 tell us how we can help share prayer request or share your testimony. Would love to use your story on the air. You can also subscribe to our show on iTunes podcast store and be sure to give us a rating search for the Salvation Army's words of life. Follow us on social media for the latest episode extended interviews and more.
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