There is a well known joke that can from time to time be heard from the pulpit and it goes something like this –
A newly arrived soul is being shown around heaven by God and as God points out blessed places in heaven they pass a high white wall over which you can not see. The new soul turns to God waiting for an explanation and when none is forthcoming the soul asks God what is behind the wall. God looks at the wall and says in a conspiratorial voice those are the (input the denomination to which you belong) they believe they are the only souls here!
Jokes are funny because they contain seeds of truth in them and it is this truth that presented this weeks spiritual.
Consider for a moment the wonders that heaven might hold. The amazing beauty, the creative splendor and now picture the rules that define your faith as being right, as bricks that will surround your denomination and separate you from the diversity of heaven.
We create these rules to define ourselves more right, more faithful, more spiritually correct and they are human rules based on human understanding.
They are rules we create to define ourselves and may have nothing to do with how God defines love, faithfulness, and forgiveness.
In this household we follow Mennonite beliefs, rules of faith and we expect to find in heaven everything and everyone God loves!
In this week following Pentecost be mindful of how vast God's love is and how narrowly we define this love to keep others out and ensure our special place, when clearly we are told that God will pour out his spirit on all people.
Lectionary Reading for this week Act 2:1-21, Psalm 104:24-34, 35b, Romans 8:14-17, John 14:8-17