A Word From the Pastor
Rev. Paul Turner, Senior Pastor

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Pastor's Ponderings - A Common Good

In an ever-divided world it has become hard to find a common good that connects people together. We live in a world with varying political and national identity, politics that get heated, and our passion for our own wants and desire can lead to divisions amongst family and friends. Even in the church we find ourselves divided over issues that have put strains on brothers and sisters in Jesus Christ. In talking to one another at times we have forgotten to share Jesus Christ's love and grace in life's difficult conversations. Our different theological arguments and scriptural interpretations have become more important to us on a personal level that just leveling up with one another and gracefully and lovingly having caring conversations that are guided by the love and grace of the Holy Spirit. No common good for the church can come out of the divisions that separate us as the Body of Christ and nobody outside of the church wants to be in between conversations that intensify to a point that we lose sight of the beautiful perfume that is Christ's grace and love that we are called to share together and out in the world. As brothers in sisters in Christ we have experienced a common good in his grace and love in our lives and we are called to share that grace and love with the world. The good news of Jesus Christ is a call to serve a common good of sharing our faith with the people around us. Philippians 2:1-8 describes the common love and grace we share through the Spirit of God.

Philippians 2:1-8 Therefore if you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any common sharing in the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, 2 then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and of one mind. 3 Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, 4 not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.
5 In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus: 6 Who, being in very nature[a] God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage; 7 rather, he made himself nothing by taking the very nature[b] of a servant, being made in human likeness.
8 And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to death-even death on a cross!

Through the common Spirit of Christ, we share a community of faith that shares a common good news of sharing Christ's grace and love amongst one another and the world. Here are some points to gleam from Philippians 2:1-8 on the common good of the community of faith we have at Mansfield Trinity United Methodist Church and that we can share with people of the Mansfield community. As Christians we share through caring with all these three points:

  • 1. We share comfort in Jesus Christ's love.
  • 2. We share a common tenderness and compass in the Holy Spirit.
  • 3. We share Christ's humility that values others above ourselves.

When we as Christians share a common tenderness and compass through the Holy Spirit the world and people around us will want to know more about Jesus Christ. When we value others and show some humility, we have a chance to share about Jesus Christ's grace and love. As Christians we should bring the comfort of Christ to the world, sharing in a common good, caring for one another through Christ the Savior.