From the Desk of Rev. Beth
Rev. Elizabeth Stotts, Pastor
Each week I welcome everyone to worship with these words, ”Whether you are old or young, rich or poor, gay or straight, regardless of your political persuasion, country of origin, or ethnic identity, whether your faith is strong and deep or you’re at the end of your rope, you’re welcome here.”
I want to take a minute to break that down. There is no doubt that we are a welcoming congregation. We proudly welcome people from all walks of life, all abilities, and identities. But what I want you to really think about is your faith. Is your faith strong and deep? Or are you at the end of your rope? Somewhere in the middle? Let’s talk about it!
We humans struggle to be vulnerable, to open ourselves up and show our true selves to others. Whether we’re worried about what others will think about us or we just don’t want to admit to ourselves who we are, this impedes us from truly entering into some life-changing and perhaps even faith-deepening activities. Sometimes, in order to be a welcoming community, we have to remember that we have to welcome the whole of ourselves too, not just welcome others. Self-acceptance and self-love are important aspects of welcoming.
Each Tuesday night I lead a Bible Study where a faithful few dare to be vulnerable with each other and with me. Studying scripture together is a very intimate act. It requires those in attendance to crack themselves and their lives open and share with others. Bible study isn’t a place where you can come and observe. No. Bible study requires active participation. What Bible study does not require is perfection.
I want to say that again. Bible study does not require perfection. Bible study only requires that you show up with your authentic self, your curiosity, and your questions. (March’s Congregational Life theme is “Questioning”!) You don’t have to be a biblical scholar to read and study the Bible. You don’t even have to have your own Bible to come to Bible study. (We have plenty!) And honestly, there are no right answers when it comes to faith questions, so that should be a relief for many.
If you’ve been scared to attend Bible Study, a book study, or Score Club, if you’ve been intimidated by any of the activities or programs we offer here at CSCC, I hope you’ll just give something a try. Your life speaks to your faith and that’s really all you’ll need to attend any of our programs, studies, or events. We’re a judgement-free zone here at CSCC.
Tyra Banks (supermodel and host of America’s Next Top Model) once said “Perfect is boring. Human is beautiful.” So bring your beautiful human self, wherever you are in your faith, and let’s learn and grow and question. We’re all on this journey together.
(Bible Study is every Tuesday night at 7pm in the Fireplace Room)