Wednesday, September 16, 2015: Ezekiel 40-41; Psalm 128; Rev. 21
4 The man said to me, “Mortal, look closely and listen attentively, and set your mind upon all that I shall show you, for you were brought here in order that I might show it to you; declare all that you see to the house of Israel.”
These chapters include the vision of the new temple and some new instructions for temple worship. The vision begins, as it should, with the direction to pay attention – to listen closely, to focus the mind on what will be revealed. Perhaps that is an invitation issued to us as we read the remaining verses.
One thing I noticed this time through my own reading is that there are gates facing in each direction – a north gate; south gate; east and west gate. Why is this significant? It is because the connection to God; the worship of God; the mercy of God; the presence of God…all that is God – is open to ALL PEOPLE, from ALL CORNERS of the earth. There are none turned away because of race, gender, age, social position, etc. NO RESTRICTIONS to the access to God … no restrictions, that is, except for our own heart.
What do you think would change if the church could truly live into the reality that ALL are welcome? What would it look like if Saint Paul's UMC adopted that position…I mean, really truly adopted that position and made every single person welcome to come and worship, come and grow, come and serve, come and share, come and give, come and be LOVED.
I am praying for that day – will you join me in prayer? More importantly, will you join me in making it a reality?