It is imperative that the institutional church that is collapsing beneath bureaucratic top heaviness, clergy-centric practice, and ecclesiastic loss of soul live forward into the original vision of Jesus. Indeed, the gospel-shaped church is the only kind that will birth Jesus-followers in the years ahead. What I see emerging in myriad ways and places is precisely that — a gospel-shaped movement.
—Elaine A. Heath, God Unbound: Wisdom from Galatians for the Anxious Church (Upper Room Books, 2016)
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The church throughout Judea, Galilee, and Samaria enjoyed a time of peace. God strengthened the church, and its life was marked by reverence for the Lord. Encouraged by the Holy Spirit, the church continued to grow in numbers.
—Acts 9:31 (CEB)
Prayer for the Week
Holy God, thank you for the many expressions of church that are available to us today. Help us to remember that we are your beloved children. Guide us to love one another and to remain faithful to you through prayer and other spiritual practices. In Jesus’ name, we pray. Amen.
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(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)
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