Saturday, September 14, 2013
Holy Cross Day
The Hard Wood of the Cross
There is an old prayer that puts it well
"Lord Jesus Christ, you stretched out your arms of love on the hard wood of the cross that everyone might come within the reach of your saving embrace: So clothe us in your Spirit that we, reaching forth our hands in love, may bring those who do not know you to the knowledge and love of you; for the honor of your Name. Amen." ~Book of Common Prayer, page 101
Not everyone can love gay folks. This is especially true in churches. Most churches want to "fix" them. Some go so far as to say they are an "abomination". Others speak of them as if they were "disordered". But in the culture wars we have been fighting for many years now, we have been struggling to love all without regard to sexual orientation, gender, race, ethnicity, class, or language. For the truth of the matter is, neither can everyone can love black folks, foreigners, poor folks, or Spanish speaking people.
For Episcopalians and for the Emerging Inclusive Church, we like, Jesus have been struggling to stretch out our arms of love on the hard wood of the cross so that everyone may come within the reach of God's saving embrace. We have now come to the point where we have opened our ministry and membership to LGBT folks as well as straight folks, women as well as men, foreigners as well as White Anglo Saxon Protestants, Spanish speaking as well as English speaking folks. It has not been easy. In fact, it has caused enormous controversy and schism.
But it is as plain as the nose on your face. Jesus stretched out his arms of love on the hard wood of the cross so that everyone may come within the saving reach of his saving embrace. EVERYONE!!! As we seek to be obedient to Jesus we can do nothing less.
Today and everyday is a day to embrace the Holy Cross as Jesus did.
Happy Holy Cross day.