Read Acts 11:1-18
If there’s one thing I absolutely love about my denomination is that we have no concept of outcast. At least in theory. There’s no circumcised/uncircumcised. There’s no Gentile/Jew. There’s no woman/man. There’s no Black/White. There’s no Gay/Straight. …
But there is. Sometimes I fear that we get too much into a lull of we’re open to all that we forget how being open to all can be condemning to others. In order to be open to the LGBT et al community, we sometimes forget to be open to our cis-straight friends. By being open to Blacks, we forget to be open to Hispanics.
It’s hard to be open to all. It’s a dream, and we haven’t achieved that dream yet. The way we talk about it in the Disciples of Christ, you’d think we’re already there, but we’re not. We have people in our congregations who don’t understand that All Means All, and they don’t want to understand.
They’d rather live under a rock where people can be separated, where it’s between that person and God what they do with their lives. But it’s not. It’s between us and God, us as a community. My understanding, my faith, my journey in this world isn’t between just me and God. That’s impossible. We’re a communal people, and we need to take the time and effort to learn about those who are different than us, to learn what those differences mean, if anything.
We’re a people who are lax in our practices of All Means All. We’re more segregated now than ever. Not just with racism, sexism, genderism, but with ageism. Who wants to go to a church when they’re in their twenties with people who are all in their eighties? Not many, which is a problem. We talk this belief system where we are all one together, but we’re not. It’s fact.
And sadly that fact hasn’t sunk into our hearts. Sadly, We’re still criticizing Peter like those in this passage, talking about how we’re still separated and not understanding how to truly join together to be one, united only for God.