This week at Oakland Startup Church we had the privilege and the pleasure of worshipping together with our sisters and brothers from The Way Church. As we sang together, prayed together, and ate together, God painted a beautiful living picture of barriers breaking down, a new kind of family being created, and all people coming together as one in his community. It was a preview of things to come. Sometimes, Christians call moments like this "reconciliation."
But we would be remiss if we let what we experienced on Sunday--as beautiful as it was--lull us into an incomplete and easy picture of what reconciliation really means. In her book, Roadmap to Reconciliation, Dr. Brenda Salter McNeil gives one of the best definitions of the word I have heard to date:
Reconciliation is an ongoing spiritual process involving forgiveness, repentance, and justice that restores broken relationships and systems to reflect God's original intention for all creation to flourish. (P. 22)
I, for one, am excited to be a part of restoring broken systems and relationships together with our brothers and sisters at The Way. I'm ecstatic that we are doing the work of the Ceasefire Collective together. I'm eager to see what greater work of justice God has for us to do in 6 months, 2 years, and 5 years from now. Reconciliation in all of its spiritual, physical, relational and systemic glory is ahead of us, and God is on the move! You ready?