Memorial Drive is in the process of getting a new and much needed lawn sign. We have an old one on a pole too high for cars and too low for planes. I'm enthused to see this new one coming our way.
Church signs, though, are an irony to society. While they speak of something pertinent to the church located at the site, too many in our communities can read between the lines. What we don't see (but they do clearly) is this message: "Stay Out". Only the churches Jesus builds truly say welcome.
And which are the churches Jesus is building? Well, not necessarily those who say Church of Christ or Baptist or Catholic on the front lawns but those who say "We Love You As You Are" Church or "Jesus Judges; We Won't" Church.
I believe there are many times more wonderful people willing to be a part of the spiritual system Jesus desires if it weren't for us church people. Our congregation is constantly working on such a transformation. We have not arrived; but that's a key part of what I address. No one arrives....ever. Jesus alone makes arrival possible because he is our only hope....always.
While churches don't realize it, we may have collectively developed so many religious hoops to jump that our communities have thrown up their collective hands and said, "Stop the insanity! We can't take this any longer!"
What they can take is understanding, possibility of recovery, intentional courtesy, the pure Word of God, and authentic love....the heart to heart kind. We live among a menagerie of people who have tremendous treasures of God buried deeply within. We must find them in order to discover gifts toward us He has waiting.
Welcome to his kind of church. May those who attend in a few days on Easter walk away saying we read between the lines and "God likes me!"