From ages past, God’s people have faced the danger of absorption into the surrounding culture. From calling Abraham out to leave his homeland and walk in covenant with Him to a new land, to calling His Church into a New Covenant relationship with Him in and through Jesus, God tells us to be separate from the sinful culture (not the people) of the world. So, Here We Stand, a “chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people,” 1 Peter 2:9a.
Now what? Now our Lord says we are to go into the world! What? Yes, now that God has redeemed us by the blood of Christ, set us apart and filled us with His own Spirit, He calls us to go into the world. The remainder of 1 Peter 2:9 says, “that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light.”
The world is vastly different from what it was only a few decades ago. Many view the Church today as old-fashioned, unnecessary, and irrelevant. Shame on us when we remain inside the “ivory towers” of our church buildings, waiting for these people to “come to church.” We, the Church, must follow the example of Jesus, as He went out into the world ministering to the outcast, hurting, desperate and hopeless individuals. He touched the lepers, ate and fellowshipped with sinners, drew the children to Himself, all the while teaching in love, with no condemnation.
The Here We Stand Campaign gives each of us the opportunity to participate in this type of ministry as funding is provided for Innovative Missional Ministry.
The Campaign also provides funds for Professional Church Worker Scholarships. While we must go out from the gathering of our congregations, we must never minimize the importance of gathering together where we are strengthened by Word and Sacrament, where we practice love for one another, where we receive our preparation to go into the world.
I am appreciative of the leadership within our district guiding us to be salt and light. Therefore, I give.
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