Living Jesus' Radical Love

Dear Friends in Christ -

Recently, I had the opportunity to attend the North Carolina Synod Gathering in Hickory, North Carolina. The three-day event provided opportunities for networking with church leaders, attending workshops and hearing a fascinating keynote speaker, Lutheran theologian Dr. Jacqueline Bussie.

Dr. Bussie is the author of the acclaimed book Love without Limits: Jesus' Radical Vision for Love with No Exceptions. If you are looking for an approachable spiritual autobiography with keen insights on living the love of Jesus in the complicated circumstances of today's world, Bussie's book is recommended. Be forewarned, some material will make you laugh, some will challenge you, some may even anger you, and some will bring you tears. Bussie's book asks: "What does it mean to live Jesus' radical vision for love in the modern world?"

This is not a new question. In every age we have had to reconsider the witness concerning Jesus Christ and decide how we will live it out in the emerging world around us. Answers that may have been sufficient even a generation ago may not be sufficient for us today. Why? Is it because the gospel of Jesus Christ is changing? No. It's because the culture is constantly in flux. What was in vogue yesterday is now out of style. The way we interacted 20 years ago is no longer the way we interact today. The only constant in culture is change. So the church is constantly in need of reflection as to what it means to live Jesus' radical vision in this modern world. Its a foundational question of Christian mission. Its as relevant to each of us personally as it is to us as the whole Body of Christ. None of us are exempt from addressing the question.

We at Our Saviour Lutheran Church have embarked on a bold new adventure to engage this question and to respond with our lives. This involves more than simply attending worship, receiving Eucharist, bringing our offering and studying the Bible. These are mission empowering activities in which all disciples of Jesus Christ must participate. But these activities are not the mission. The mission reaches far beyond anything we may do in a church building. It involves our family lives, our social lives, how we use our resources, how we view civic matters and vote, how we view others, and what we do with our lives.

My question for you today is how is Jesus leading you to live his radical vision of love? In what ways are you participating in mission empowerment activities that equip you to live this radical vision? Where do you need to make changes in your life to embrace this vision? When will you take a new step in this direction?

St. Paul says, "See, now is the acceptable time; see, now is the day of salvation!" (2 Cor. 6:2)

This Sunday, we begin a new summer sermon series based on the book of Esther in which we will explore more deeply what it means to be the "called out people of God" in these changing times. I hope you will commit your summer to engage with us for mission empowering activities like worship and Bible study. We are here to equip you so you may powerfully engage your evolving world with the love-filled vision of Jesus Christ.


Pastor Frank

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