May 2019 Monthly Letter

April 30th, 2019

Dear ORM Reconcilers,

I got a short message from my Jewish friend, Jerry who heard about three churches being burned in Opelousas, Louisiana. He said, “Seems like every day I hear about increases of violence, racism and anti-Semitism. Such a terrible thing that churches would be burned. I thought we were moving past this kind of thing. How awful!” Awful indeed. I whole-heartedly agree with Jerry.

Another friend of mine said, “I believe that racism and anti-Semitism seem to be on the rise in our country. Racism is not new in the United States. Part of the population feels that race, heritage, and culture are either superior or inferior.”

But we see just the opposite when we look into the word of God! In Ephesians 2:11-13 we read: “Therefore, remember that formerly you who are Gentiles by birth and called ’uncircumcised’ by those who call themselves ‘the circumcision’ (which is done in the body by human hands) — remember that at that time you were separate from Christ, excluded from citizenship in Israel and foreigners to the covenants of the promise, without hope and without God in the world. But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far away have been brought near by the blood of Christ.”

Furthermore, Ephesians 2:19-21 states: “Consequently, you are no longer foreigners and strangers, but fellow citizens with God’s people and also members of his household, built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone. In him the whole building is joined together and rises to become a holy temple in the Lord.” We are being built together to become a dwelling place where God lives by his Spirit!

In Ephesians 4:1-8 the Apostle Paul encourages us to be peacemakers: “As a prisoner for the Lord, then, I urge you to live a life worthy of the calling you have received. Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace. There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to one hope when you were called; one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all. But to each one of us grace has been given as Christ apportioned it. This is why it says: ‘When he ascended on high, he took many captives and gave gifts to his people.’”

Yes, this world is filled with violence and hate. But thank God that He has given us the Ministry of Reconciliation so that we carry the torch of love, peace, hope, thankfulness, and righteousness to all people. We represent God the Father and Jesus Christ every day to the world around us. I encouraged my friend Jerry with this message and I want to share it with you.

May God continue to bless and keep you in His word as you share the Gospel with others, setting an example of Godliness. The world around us desperately needs it.

Love and peace!