Five Minute Friday: Welcome

**Five Minute Friday is an initiative set up by Lisa-Jo Baker over at Surprised by Motherhood. It has now been taken over by Kate over at Heading Home. The basic premise is to take the word Kate gives and write, non-stop for 5 minutes. Then you stop and post. Read more about it here.

WELCOME

GO

There are many wonderful upsides to technology, to social media, to the internet, to our current society.

For starters, I wouldn’t be here writing if it weren’t for many wonderful bloggers who convinced me I could through their examples.

As someone who grew up in several different countries, with friends settled all over the world, I wouldn’t be able to be in touch with anywhere near as many of them (and at times, not even my own family).

There are some things in my life that I would find much harder and more time-consuming, that’s for sure!

But sometimes, I long for the simplicity of life before it all happened.

We kid ourselves that modern advances in technology make everything easier, better, more fun. But the truth is, we are a broken, lonely society. An individualized one that no longer understands the need and deep desire we all have for community, but searches instead for that community in all the wrong places – from social media to pornography.

We are a tired, stressed out society. We scour the internet and technology for all the answers, for some way to organize our lives, to make them better, more fulfilling. Yet we end up with too much information scattered over lots of different places, and we waste time then complain we have none to spare for the important things.

FMF - WelcomeWe are an overweight society with a ton of health problems to boot. We use technology to discover the latest dieting fads and put horrible strain on our bodies. We are confused by all the information out there and don’t know what to believe.

We are a scared, isolated society. Our kids no longer get to play outside, to explore nature, to nurture a love of learning through play and creativity. We are terrified by media stories of child kidnappings, murders, terrorism. So we immerse them in indoor, technology-based activities like TV and video games. We know it’s not healthy. But at least it feels more safe.

We all know, deep-down, the solution. We know that, for all its good points, we need to regularly turn off the technology and seek out the community we so long for.

And this is what the Church should be. A place to find that community.

I wish I could say it always is.

But the Church is made up of broken, lonely, tired, stressed out, unhealthy, scared and isolated people too. We get it wrong. A lot.

FMF - WelcomeSo I just want to ask for the forgiveness of all those who have not found the Church to be a welcoming place. I myself have felt it. But I know that I myself have also been the person who is not always welcoming. So I am deeply sorry. And I hope you will give us a second chance. Because the need for community is more than just a hope or distant dream. It is breath to our bodies – it is life-giving.

And to the Church, I say, please please let’s show the world the light that we are supposed to be in dark times. Let us be hospitable and invite the broken, the lonely, the poor, the sinners, all those who are in so many ways just like us. Let us open our arms and say:

“Welcome.”

STOP

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6 thoughts on “Five Minute Friday: Welcome

  1. Love this, Claire! As the body of Christ, the church really does have a responsibility to show His heart to the world. We can’t even begin to do that until we first welcome the world in to community with us.

    (Dropping by from the FMF link up. ;p)

  2. This is so true about getting it wrong a lot of the time. I love your honesty about not always being welcoming either. I have been in both situations too. We are currently in a new town halfway across the country from where we were before. So we have been trying out new churches. I’ve been to churches where we haven’t felt welcome into them. Yet, if I were honest with myself, I haven’t always been welcoming to others either in the past. We sure are a bunch of broken, messy people. Thank you for your thoughts. They are good ones to ponder. Blessings, Carrie
    (visiting from FMF)

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