One of the most unusual acts Jesus did during his ministry was to give attention to children. “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these.”(Mark 10:14) This was an unusual act in the children like women were scene in terms of property. Living in a paternalistic Jewish society, talking to women and even children were not the status quo. Even today an orthodox Rabbi or Muslim Imam is not allowed to shake hands with women who are not of their family. When the Bible mentioned head-counts of attendance, the women or children are never counted.
A female leader of a church informed me that she did not approve of a female minister. “It was not Biblical.” Yet this was the same person who was delighted by her pastor years ago to receive a leadership role in her church, she thought her days as leader in the church was over because she was divorced. It was not long ago that people with mental illness were considered demon possessed. The Christian church had to revise their piety on divorce because 40 to 50 percent of the people in the US are divorced.
Today, the Christian church is still split over women roles and acceptance of various sexual preferences. More women are running for political office than ever before. Soon the Christian church will realize that they are on the wrong side of history. Without women leaders in the future, the Church will die. Jesus did not see an unclean woman at the well but a precious soul. Women are not becoming the bread winner and men are becoming the care givers. Embrace the change, Jesus did.
The Bible Project
The Bible Project (BP) is a resource for any one who teaches the Bible. BP is a “non-profit animation studio that produces short-form, fully animated videos to make the biblical story accessible to everyone, everywhere.” The videos are under the Bible Project channel on Youtube. However, the videos can be downloaded along with other resources on their website. You can join BP website for free. They do ask for donations.
These videos are a great introduction to any Sunday School lesson or study of the book of the Bible. BP also has studies with themes. For persons with a learning disability or students who learned visually, this is a great resource. See an example of one of their videos below.
Many Blue Cross and Blue Shield customers in the Atlanta metro area received a letter dated March 2, 2018 stating the company will no longer make Piedmont Health System as a preferred provider. If you live in Newman, Ga. the closes preferred hospital is in Warm Springs about an hour away. On the south side of the metro area, Piedmont Health System has brought up most of the hospitals. This move by Blue Cross and Blue Shield will make millions of their customer with poor health care options.
Over the course of several years, few churches have care about health care for their members or for the poor. The Georgia Baptist got out of the health care years ago with the idea that this was not in their mission and didn’t get enough people saved. About all you get from an evangelical church about health care is a response “we will pray for you.”
One exception to the health care situation by the Christian church has been the Catholic Church. Pope Francis stated. “Health care ministry will always be a necessary and fundamental task, to be carried out with renewed enthusiasm by all, from parish communities to the largest healthcare institutions.” (Source: Catholic News Agency, Dec 11, 2017).
Another exception is the First Baptist Church of Jonesboro, Ga. offer a free health clinic called the Riley Clinic. Information from their website state they only take uninsured patients. Hopefully, these two Christian examples will lead other Christian communities into providing health care.
In the Old and New Testament, God called out His people to take care of the poor. On Saturday night, several ministers in Rockdale County Georgia prayed for ministry to the homeless.
With the proposed federal budget, additional out of the box strategies is needed. According to the weekend edition of the Atlanta Business Chronicle, an organization called, Food Well Alliance (FWA) installed an executive director, Kim Harris. FWA has provided 2.2 million dollars to Atlanta metro organizations. The answer to hunger in Georgia maybe connecting to local food organizations to deal with their unique issues.
Conflict is not a easy issue to manage especially in a church setting. Most of the time it is easier to not deal with it at all. I have come across several articles which is worth reading in dealing with problem people in the church. In order to not deal with a problem, church people may say we are all sinners and deny there is a problem. Boston archdiocese allegedly allowed a cover up of thousands of sexually abuse minors by Catholic priests over decades, according to the Boston Globe. This was not the example of Jesus in the Temple running out the money changers.