In my Jan/Feb column I wrote about the influence of secularism in the American church today and how it can skew our focus and even lead us away from living in God’s truth. I wrote that only a small percentage of Christians in America today hold a true biblical worldview.
With this in mind, what if we, as a Mennonite Brethren family, sought to go “home.” Let me explain. Most of us know the good feeling of returning to our home. Home is where we can be ourselves, relax and find rest. Home is safe; it’s what we know. Home is comforting; our closest loved ones are there with us, and we talk and share meals, joys and even pain.
For most of us, returning to our childhood home is typically a warm experience too. It’s revisiting the security we once knew, the adults who raised us and maybe siblings who we sometimes fought with or teased. And if everyone in the family returns home at the same time it’s a reunion and often a time of celebration. (I realize this happy scenario is not true for everyone.)
Currently our USMB family feels disjointed as we don’t see eye to eye on some things. At times, we fuss with one another and perhaps don’t even trust those we disagree with. So, when it comes to our USMB family, what if we focused on coming “home”?
What if coming home together meant that we all recommitted to the Bible as our source of authority for how we act and believe and do church? God’s truth, his revelation, expressed through the pages of Scripture being the sound structure of this home, the strong girders and walls that allow it to stand strong among the stress of time and current cultural pressure. We have been known as “people of the Book.” Let’s get back to that—back home.
We enter the front door of this home and go to various rooms, rooms we Mennonite Brethren know well. These rooms reveal who we are and what we strive for, our identity. The room in the center is Jesus; he is the center of our faith and the center of this family. He is why we’re here together.
Then there is the room where we like to gather, the room of community where we live out our faith in Jesus and enjoy fellowship with one another. There is the room of reconciliation, where we work out tensions and differences and seek healing. The room of evangelism is where we gather to strategize for how we might work with Jesus to help add more people to this home.
This home also contains a wall that is covered with words. They are wise words that we have crafted together to guide us in living out and understanding the home’s structure, the Word of God. It’s our Confession of Faith that describes who we are before God and how we join to live that out. It’s our family covenant. It’s not Scripture, but it’s our definitive understanding of what Scripture says to us. We agree together with what’s written on that wall and it bonds us.
Our home is not “out there” where secularism and culture infect and sway. No, we know where our home is. C’mon, let’s go home.
Don Morris is the USMB national director. He and his wife, Janna, live in Edmond, Oklahoma, where they attend Cross Timbers Church.