Included |

Accept one another, then, just as Christ accepted you, in order to bring praise to God. Romans 15:7

This week I have been serving with the CROSSROADS Mission Team helping victims of Hurricane Sandy in New Jersey. It has been a huge blessing and as with any mission experience I am always humbled at God’s faithfulness. Yesterday we went to a training session with another church.They arrived first and took all the chairs in the small fellowship hall. They all had snacks and were enjoying fellowship among themselves. When we arrived we had to stand awkwardly around the perimeter of the room. No one greeted us. No one offered us a seat. No one shared their food or beverages. I thought very little about until I was discussing inclusion verses exclusion with our youth director Becky Canny. She explained how she felt excluded when we through orientation. She shared how she hoped our church does not act like this. I told her we all have to be careful about how we extend God’s love and acceptance.

Sometimes we can unintentionally make others feel excluded. We can be so busy fellowshipping with our friends we forget to see those who need our friendship. As we were leaving our meeting a member of the other church walked up to me with a bag of chocolate covered pretzels. She apologized for her team and said, “They can get very focused sometimes.” I shared the chocolate pretzels with Becky and she shared with me “that chocolate can cover a multitude of sins.” Have a blessed week and continue to share God’s love. I look forward to seeing youSunday when our team returns.

In Christ’s Love and Service,
Pastor Paul Marzahn