God’s vision is that His Church would be the one place on earth where the ground is level: where race doesn’t matter, where success doesn’t matter, where weight doesn’t matter. The human next to you right now or in front of you in line at the grocery store is a man or woman created in the image of God. That is true of them whether they are African or Asian or Anglo or Arab. Do YOU believe that? Let’s talk about this so much that it sinks into our hearts and minds and attitudes and feelings and so that it changes the way we communicate. Church, together, let’s become quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to anger, especially in the deep and difficult challenges of our time. Lord, help us to be a community shaped by love and defined by love, help us to show our world the power of love and grace and peace.
After our powerful weekend message from the movie “Zootopia,” let’s keep on talking …. and even more importantly, let’s start really LISTENING. Here’s our homework:
1. Step into someone’s story! Set up some time to engage with someone who is of a different race than you. For example, ask a Latino person what their experience has been during this election cycle (remember: this is not about getting political, but about listening and loving).
2. Listen to Andy Stanley’s (North Point Community Church) sermon: “Skin in the Game” found here: http://northpoint.org/messages/071016-message/
3. Consider how you can apply this Dallas Willard quote: “Everything you can do with anger, you can do better without it.”
4. Book recommendations: “Roadmap to Reconciliation” by Brenda Salter McNeil and Eugene Cho & “Disunity in Christ” by Christina Cleveland
5. Watch the movie, “Zootopia.”
Primary text: James 1:19
Other texts in this message: Galatians 3:26-28, James 2:1-9, Colossians 3:11, Matthew 7:2, Matthew 22:37-40
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Galatians 3:26-28, James 2:1-9, Colossians 3:11, Matthew 7:2, Matthew 22:37-40, James 1:19, Troy Champ, God and the Movies, Racism, Slow to Speak, Quick to Listen, Slow to Anger