Today was another fun day for me at First Church because of the delightful lunch and conversation I had with two of our newer members. One of my job perks is having the opportunity to meet and engage with our members one on one.
Over many a lunch, we have shared stories about how we came to be in community at First Church. During the conversations, we learn how we differ. Usually, they are fairly simple such as they like sleeping under the stars in a sleeping bag and I prefer sleeping under a comforter found in the Hilton. They wear burnt orange on game day while I am wearing maroon. They have been Methodist from birth, and I grew up Baptist. They attend a 9:30 Sunday School Class and my class is at 11:00.
Of course in that same conversation, we find much more interesting commonalities. Some past discoveries include realizing that we are both originally from the Texas Panhandle and know where Bovina or Wellington are located; that we both lived in Tripoli, Libya in the ’70s; that we both located to Fort Worth for a job and now cannot imagine living any place else; that we look forward to starting our week in community right here on 5th Street!
Our differences may at times make us feel a little uncomfortable or vulnerable, but our similarities draw us closer in a safe and harmonious way. As part of a community that encourages us to be more Christ-like in our actions and thoughts, we recognize and celebrate that we are different and yet the same.
This is possible because the one most common aspect we share is our love for Jesus Christ. Over the last several weeks, Dr. Bruster has talked about the power of that love drawing us closer together. It is our mutual love for Christ that brings us together in community. It is our mutual love for Christ that gives us the mind to accept each other’s differences. It is our mutual love for Christ that gives us the heart to love one another.
I am so thankful for these lunches. I am thankful for why they happen, and I am thankful for what they lead to — a community where we find encouragement, compassion, love and hope through Christ.
This Is Us.
Hope to see you on Sunday!
Together through Christ,
Director of Stewardship