Monday Mind Dump (6/22/20)

Luke Simmons / June 22, 2020

• Well, that was fun!

• It was hard to know what to expect of yesterday’s services, but they turned out well.

• I’m getting out of town today for family vacation, but I figured I’d share some post-regathering reflections.

• It was definitely a mixture of really great and also pretty weird.

• Great to have so many people together, great to sing loud with a loud band, great to celebrate communion, and great to preach with an interactive crowd.

• At the same time, it was also a little weird.

• Seemed like we were all trying to figure out the most ‘normal’ way to act.

• Which is pretty hard when you have a mask on.

• I’d guess that most folks who had one on would have preferred not to, so it was a good example of sacrificial love and submission to government authority.

• That whole mask thing over the last few days has been pretty confusing.

• There’s a Mesa proclamation that exempts religious institutions, and a Maricopa County one that is a bit more stringent.

• Not sure who has jurisdiction on that—is it the county or city?

• Add it to the list of confusing things to lead through over the last few months.

• It was fun to drive into church this morning—jamming out to Rattle! and praying for God to move in a powerful way.

• I was amazed at how many people told me something like “I didn’t realize how much I need church until I couldn’t have it.”

• Couldn’t agree more.

• I’m proud of our tech team for the hard work they put in today.

• We had some network and audio issues in the morning — sorry to those livestreaming at 10:45—but I’m proud of their effort and troubleshooting.

• We knew going into it that today wouldn’t be flawless, and hopefully the live stream will keep getting better.

• As I said in the message, it’s been a strange last few months, with wave after wave of new dynamics.

• One that’s been especially tough has been leading and shepherding through race related issues.

• I think you take the combination of a naturally volatile issue + covid fatigue + digital ministry (vs. in-person) and it made for a challenging combination.

• I’m seeing that there’s a big need to provide helpful resources that help us think through the issues.

• Otherwise it’s too easy for people to connect dots in ways that I/we would never intend.

• Seth Troutt already provided a helpful list of resources, and I’d also recommend a recent article by Tim Keller on “The Sin of Racism.”

• Additionally, Seth and I recently recorded a video addressing 5 key questions on the issue:

  1. Why must the church be engaged on issues of race and justice?
  2. What concerns you about the secular approach to pursuing racial justice?
  3. What categories of our theological or biblical understanding are underdeveloped?
  4. How should we process it when Christians and non-Christians use similar terms?
  5. What do you hope this moment leads to at Gateway?

• You can watch the video here.

• It’s long and not for the faint of heart. 🙂

• It’s not comprehensive and there’s a lot we don’t talk about.

• But I think we hit on a few really important issues that folks at Gateway need to hear about from the hearts of their pastors.

• My hope is that it is a good next step in the conversation.

• Well, I’m getting ready to go, so that’s it for now.

• Thanks to so many of you who have prayed for and encouraged me recently — it’s been a real gift.

• See y’all soon.

• All of life is all for Jesus.