Tuesday, July 11, 2006

thinking outside in

It’s only been in the last year or so that I’ve started to really understand that church is meant to be looking outward - that our lives are meant to ‘be’ the great commission - that we get to become disciples as we make disciples. Everything I’m reading in the Bible at the moment just deepens this conviction in me. Jesus was way more inclusive, and a lot less picky than I am when it comes to choosing who to ‘let in’ on the glorious secret of redemption, and the wonderful life of community that is the church. A few months back I was reading the story of Cornelius in Acts, and it hit me in a whole different way. God chose a man to be the first of a whole race (the gentiles) to be ‘let in’ in a magnificent way. When I’ve read the story before, I’ve assumed that I would have thought very highly of Cornelius if I’d been Peter - he was, after all, a God fearing man who looked after his household well; a man of good reputation. I hadn’t thought of him as a commander in the occupying army! God isn’t on their side is He? I hadn’t thought of him as someone who worshipped in the wrong way - having grown up in Northern Ireland, I’m very aware of perceptions when it comes to this particular hot potato! - He didn’t even really know who he was worshipping (he had no idea about Jesus yet), but he was headed in the right direction, and the truth is that God knew who he was. What really struck me was that he was in pursuit of the Father even though he wasn’t yet in possession of all the facts... I realize that for all I think I ‘know’, I’m just the same - I am in deep need of the Father to show me others who I have not noticed yet (or worse, already discredited) who He sees and knows. He might just want to use me to be the one to let them in...

5 Comments:

Anonymous Michelle Scott said...

Hi Kate

Love your blog, keep on passing on your pearls of wisdom.

Love Chelle

14 July, 2006 11:14  
Blogger Andy Rogers said...

Kathryn,

Don't you find that 'firsts' in the book are always really challenging and insightful.

The way you've highlighted how Cornelius, the first gentile convert, would have been offensive to conventional wisdom at the time is very similar to the first worshippers of Jesus.

This one was a real 'eye-opener' for me, Check it out http://andyrogersmuse.blogspot.com/2006/07/first-worshippers-of-jesus.html

Cheers - Andy

15 July, 2006 22:54  
Blogger Kathryn Scott said...

Andy, thank you so much for your comment! It's so true too! I love what you've written about in your blog - that God is closer than we think to those who are into stuff that we would never touch, and yet, who are hot on the trail of God.

He is way more merciful than we understand - and it's exactly because of that, that we were allowed in too!

16 July, 2006 17:01  
Blogger Alan Stirling said...

Hey Kathryn, great so see another blogger gettin going.

As for 'thinking outside in' it is one of the most challenging things to try and do in a culture like northern ireland where everything is so steeped in preconceptions, stereotypes, traditions and the likes. To break out of the mould can sometimes mean offending those who we would rather not offend.

Also, like Jason was saying last sunday, we cannot put God in a box and assume we know what God is going thing and feel about a person or opinion. To be so arrogant would place us in the wrong. Inclusion is key but always with a dose of discernment.

Anyway, blog looks good, website looks good and i'll look forward to 'watching this space'.

17 July, 2006 09:22  
Blogger dawnieprays said...

I am so blessed to have come across your blog~today in fact is my birthday, and I received my first gift :) Keep sharing: you are an inspiration and a beautiful vessel of the Lord! I have been ministered to my your music for quite some time now!
dawn houle, in NY

http://www.myspace.com/dawnieruns

25 July, 2006 14:01  

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