Ephesians 2:14-15 (MSG)
14 The Messiah has made things up between us so that we're now together on this, both non-Jewish outsiders and Jewish insiders. He tore down the wall we used to keep each other at a distance. 15 He repealed the law code that had become so clogged with fine print and footnotes that it hindered more than it helped. Then he started over. Instead of continuing with two groups of people separated by centuries of animosity and suspicion, he created a new kind of human being, a fresh start for everybody.
A professor of English was discussing the power of words with his freshman class. He emphasized the importance of a rich and extensive vocabulary. He said to the class of freshman, “Use a word ten times and it will be yours for life.”
As he continued his lecture, a young man in the back of the room closed his eyes and whispered under his breath: “WENDY, WENDY, WENDY, WENDY, WENDY, WENDY, WENDY, WENDY, WENDY, WENDY.”
Wouldn’t it be great if all we had to do was repeat a word ten times in order to make it ours, to make it true, to make it a reality? Wouldn’t it be wonderful if all we had to do was repeat the words peace, reconciliation, grace, love, acceptance, and unity in order to make them happen? Ephesians 2 tells us that Christ came to tear down the walls of division and rejection. Jesus came to build bridges not walls.
The name of “Jesus” means “Savior”or “The Lord’s helper” but the name “Jesus” is the also the Greek form of the Hebrew name “Joshua.” Remember that Joshua “Fit the Battle of Jericho . . . And the Walls came a-tumblin down.” Jesus was well named because Jesus was a wall-breaker. Jesus broke down the walls of Rejection and division among people. Jesus built bridges of peace, reconciliation, grace, love, acceptance, and unity. Those are words worth repeating! Think about it.
On another note, below is a letter from the District Superintendent of the Yadkin Valley District of the United Methodist Church confirming my reappointment as one of the pastors at Clemmons UMC. I want to share this with you, first, to say thank you for the honor and privilege of serving such a great congregation as Clemmons UMC. We have one of the best staffs in the conference and a faithful congregation that understands the important of mission, ministry, and discipleship. I'm excited about moving into a new year (my 7th!) and all the opportunities that are in front of us. I'm grateful to a pastor at one of the greatest and best appointments in the Western North Carolina Conference of the United Methodist Church.