Yesterday I brought up a subject that caused quite a stir in our community. But first, I spoke for a while about how we are often being prepared something necessary and good in the midst of our adversaries and adversity. God is not flustered by adversity. Neither need we be. The bible assumes we will have adversaries and adversity. It is part of life. It is how we live in the midst of this that the bible addresses. God doesn't see adversity as a malevolent alien to our life, but a part of our life. God prepares a table for us in the midst of it, not once it is over.
After I spoke on the issue of adversity for a while, I informed the community that the idea has been tentatively raised that the church that split off from us might be interested in renting our building as their meeting place. I don't think I'm speaking out of school because the issue is now public. There are no secrets. I opened up the floor for discussion and there was lots said and emotions expressed. I loved it... not because we are anywhere near a decision or anything like that. I loved it because these people feel free to speak their minds, no matter how shocking or disturbing or unprocessed it might be. The sign of a healthy community is not having it all together, but being able to speak freely.
I came to the conclusion, almost as soon as people started to share their concerns, fears and questions, that the conclusion isn't going to be the most important thing, but the process. This will be good to go through all these tangled notions and emotions and pull our forgiveness to a deeper place and our wisdom to a richer expression love. I don't know how it is going to turn out. I think forgiveness and love can be expressed either way. And right now I don't care. All I know is that this community will be better for even thinking about it. And for that I'm grateful.