Many years ago I learned “The Best Question Ever” from author/speaker/pastor, Andy Stanley. Simply put, based on your past experiences, present circumstances, and future hopes and dreams…“what’s the wise thing to do?”
Much of the Bible is devoted to helping people understand wisdom. Entire speeches, books, and letters encourage people to pursue wisdom, to ask for it, and to exercise it. Wisdom matters. Wisdom propels us into right decisions that are for our good and the good of others.
In this time of COVID-19 uncertainty we’ve had to try and exercise good wisdom in many ways.
With the Governor beginning Phase 2 of the reopening of Nevada businesses and such there’s a lot of questions around what churches should do. Oh, and by the way, there’s a ton of opinions out there too. Opinion masked as expertise and certainty.
Honestly though, nothing feels certain. As we learn more about the disease we learn better how to prepare and protect ourselves. It is in this uncertainty that churches and church leaders (among so many others) are wading. We are trying to do what’s right. What’s best!
A question for our community of faith…
In relation to everything going on we have to exercise wisdom by asking the right question. For many, the question being asked and argued over is…
What are we free to do?
But again, this isn’t our question. We aren’t concerned with our freedoms. As a matter of fact, one New Testament writer encourages people to consider their freedoms differently than what they were used to.
For you have been called to live in freedom, my brothers and sisters. But don’t use your freedom to satisfy your sinful nature. Instead, use your freedom to serve one another in love. For the whole law can be summed up in this one command: “Love your neighbor as yourself.” But if you are always biting and devouring one another, watch out! Beware of destroying one another. Galatians 5:13-15
Doesn’t it seem like most are advocating for using their freedom for their own benefit?
This doesn’t work for us. Why? Because we follow a different path. The path (or Kingdom) of Jesus calls us to a different law, a royal law of love. And maybe you read that last bit and it describes your social media feeds. People touting freedom to “bite and devour” others. People using “liberty” to destroy their neighbor.
If others want to live that way who am I to say anything? But as for me and my brothers/sisters in faith, we will ask a different question.
What is the wise thing to do?
It is this question that has altered and determined plans for my family and church. Everything I lead will be led with this question in mind. And it is with this question in mind that we are moving into the next phase of gathering and discussing as a community of faith.
On Monday, June 1st people will be able to register to gather for the month of June in a host home. These host homes will be capped at 10 people or less based on the host’s discretion. Once they have maxed out they will close. We are hoping to have enough options to accommodate everyone seeking to participate in a live discussion.
Each home will watch the Zoom gathering together and then engage in the discussion portions with their host home participants. Zoom will also remain the same for those who choose to stay at home as necessary. We understand we have vulnerable people in our community and we invite them to continue discussing with us via Zoom.
Host homes will be responsible for the hospitality of their group and the church will be funding that hospitality as we can. We imagine that many in the group for the month will want to contribute in various ways to the group and that is encouraged.
We will do this for the month of June (7th, 14th, & 28th) and evaluate for July.
Much of our return to the full/normal gathering will depend on 9th Bridge’s leadership and our ability to maintain our discussion format safely.
Thank you so much for your patience and participation through this uncertain time. We are excited for this next step.