June 27, 2020
Why Do We Hope?
June 27, 2020
1 Peter 3:15 – “Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect.”
People in the UMC have long stood for justice for all people. Over the centuries we’ve been mocked and ridiculed for our support of various social causes (abolition, prohibition, women’s rights, civil rights, and now racial reconciliation, just to name a few), but we’ve persisted because we believe in the Wesleyan principle of “social holiness.”
Social holiness adds another layer to the more easily embraced “personal holiness.” Of course we are called to practice holiness on a personal level, but our faith goes beyond our own thoughts and actions. We believe we are called to seek justice for all people, participating with God in the ushering in of the kingdom of heaven on earth. This can only happen when we recognize that our personal freedom and liberty is bound up with that of all of our brothers and sisters, especially the least and the lost. Until they are free, none of us can be.
So when I am asked, “Why are you supporting this cause?” Or “Why are you speaking out about this?” I can faithfully respond with gentleness and truth, “Because my hope is in Jesus, and I believe God is calling us forth into a better future for all.”
QUESTIONS FOR THE FIELD
- Look up your baptismal vows. How are you fulfilling them in the year of 2020 on both a personal and social level? How can the church help you?
FAMILY FIELD TALK
- Talk about the promises we make to God: to love our neighbor, to serve others, to stay in love with God. Why do we make these promises? What has God done for us?
Holy One, as we look back over this week of learning about and experiencing gentleness, we look forward to more opportunities to share this fruit with others, to demonstrate that we are a chosen, forgiven, and reconciled people who have found their hope. Amen.
FRUIT OF THE SPIRIT CHALLENGE
For the duration of our sermon series, we are offering daily prompts for applying the wisdom from the scriptures to our everyday lives. Each week focuses on how we can encourage those around us and bear fruit! This week we are focusing on the fruit of gentleness.
“Humility it’s not about thinking less of yourself, it’s about thinking about yourself less, having empathy, being humane and showing concern for the pain and suffering of others. That, is humility in the true sense.” ― Nurudeen Ushawu
How is God teaching you to think about yourself less and have empathy for others? How is he teaching you to stand for justice for all people? Pay attention to what God is calling you to and where his Spirit is leading you!
To learn more about the Fruit of the Spirit challenge, click here.