Learning to live a life of love.
Last night we began chapter three of the Great Spiritual Migration by Brian McLaren. The title of chapter three is Learning How To Love. Brian McLaren worked as a teacher before he became a pastor and writer. When he left pastoral ministry he was looking for a church to be part of. He wanted to find a church that would help him live a life of love. He wanted to belong to a gathering of people that could help him to love God, love people and love the earth. He was afraid he might drift away and his life might stagnate and sour. Many churches he says have sign boards that say 'All welcome' but when one gets there one finds that one is welcome as long as one believes what the people in that particular church believe. He wanted a church that focused not on beliefs but on the way of Jesus, the way of love.
When asked what he thinks the future of the church will look like he responded by sharing his vision of congregations becoming schools or studios of love. They may all look different, meet weekly or monthly or online but what they all will do is teach people to live a life of love, from the heart, for God, for all people, for all creation. He believes that just as schools teach a maths curriculum the church needs to develop a curriculum of love that teaches practices and skills of love.
So when we ask what are we doing at church, or why do we go to church, we can answer, we are learning to live a life of love.
Minister of Campsie Earlwood Clemton Park Uniting Church Congregation