Those of you who went to PCC today were on the receiving end of a huge blessing. Beth Brawley, who continues to find her voice as a speaker, not just as a worship leader, brought the message today. She and I have been working together for a long time. The more I know her, the more my respect for her also grows. She has one of the most energetic and catalytic people I know, and working with her increases my capacity to dream big and believe bigger. She and Tony have become some of our closest friends.
Today, Beth talked about the i word ‘Involve’. Specifically, she said, “Deceit is the enemy of community. Deceit kills real, authentic community.” It was the perfect day for her, really, because Beth knows something about the subject. For a long time, I’ve encouraged her to be open to God leading her, in his timing, to share a defining part of her life story. Today was that day. And I know it was a blessing to many people in our church.
The capacity of God to restore anyone from any kind of sin is mindboggling, isn’t it? As long as we remain a community that welcomes people from all kinds of backgrounds who have committed all kinds of sin and carry all kinds of guilt – as long as we open our arms wide to people like that, we’ll continue to grow.
Being that kind of church does not mean that we endorse sin or sinful lifestyles. A good church encourages friends to tell each other when they are moving away from God’s will or His commands. But a great church also champions my favorite trait about God: God is the God of second chances. There is no end to his power to restore one who comes repentant and humble in heart. There is no end to his search for the one who has moved away from a relationship with God. And there is no limit to His ability to use churches who flow with the Grace and Forgiveness of God.
Way to Go, Beth! You gave our church a great gift today. It is the continuation of the ongoing blessing that we’ve had in you and your leadership for the past 5 years. We love you and are grateful for who you are and for the example you live!