Sherri's Message
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June 9, 2016, 1:07 PM

June 9, 2016

I’ve always enjoyed going to Annual Conference.  It’s a great time to connect with old friends and meet new people.  The preaching is inspiring, the music is awesome and the ordination service always moves me to tears  - especially when people respond to the Bishop’s call to serve.  

Annual Conference is also challenging.  We discuss policy and funding and the budget. Often those conversations generate what appears to be a lack of trust among colleagues.  Instead of engaging in conversation that seeks first to understand, then be understood, some tend to make assumptions – and they often assume the absolute worst.  Others tell only one side of the story. This does not build up the Body of Christ.

When we bicker and assume that people have a hidden agenda, we fall prey to the world’s culture of mistrust and negativity and we harm the Body.  People are watching to see how we treat one another.  Why would they want to be part of us if we can’t even treat one another with care and respect?  

Paul encourages the Corinthians to, “Strive for full restoration, encourage one another, be of one mind, live in peace. And the God of love and peace will be with you (2 Cor. 13:11).”  I love the passion of God’s people.

Passion can be a great thing; but it can also wound and destroy.  I want to encourage us not to assume, but to have conversations with a variety of people with differing perspectives  - not to prove a point or win, but to seek understanding and build relationships.  

Prayerfully yours,

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