Michael Jackson on schism

Schism is the topic of the day of course, so far be it from me to try and deviate. I have come to a few more conclusions about it however…oddly enough from Michael Jackson. (I am also beginning to think that the only spiritual gift I may have is the ability to find God in the strangest of places. I also think that is the greatest gift God could have given me.) There is so much talk about the UMC breaking up and the reasons why, I would like to submit what I think is the real reason that the church is on the verge of schism…it is us. Yes, it is true, we have met the enemy of the UMC, and it is us.

Make no mistake, things in the UMC need to change. I think that the bureaucracy is to clunky to be effective, I think that there is room to discuss and possibly change how things are governed and the like, etc. but none of those things are actually going to change anything. If there is to be change in the church, then it needs to start with Michael Jackson…it needs to start with the man in the mirror.
“I’m Starting With The Man In
The Mirror
I’m Asking Him To Change
His Ways
And No Message Could Have
Been Any Clearer
If You Wanna Make The World
A Better Place
(If You Wanna Make The
World A Better Place)
Take A Look At Yourself, And
Then Make A Change”

With all this talk of schism, of withholding money, of all the donations to the fringe groups. How many plates of food do not go to the hungry? How many blankets do not go to the cold? How many people do not hear of God’s love, let alone experience it through the generosity of Christians? What would Michael say?
“As I, Turn Up The Collar On My
Favorite Winter Coat
This Wind Is Blowin’ My Mind
I See The Kids In The Street,
With Not Enough To Eat
Who Am I, To Be Blind?
Pretending Not To See
Their Needs
A Summer’s Disregard,
A Broken Bottle Top
And A One Man’s Soul
They Follow Each Other On
The Wind Ya’ Know
‘Cause They Got Nowhere
To Go
That’s Why I Want You To
Know…”

All of us are talking about love of God and love for people, but I can not help but believe that we are possessed of a humanly selfish love and not the Love that God calls us to show. How is it that we can talk about the unconditional love of God and then promptly try to leave our brothers and sisters? This is not about positions, it is about the relationship we have with one another and the responsibility we have to one another. That love, relationship and responsibility of course stems from God, but must be carried out by us. What would Michael say?
“I’ve Been A Victim Of A Selfish
Kind Of Love
It’s Time That I Realize
That There Are Some With No
Home, Not A Nickel To Loan
Could It Be Really Me,
Pretending That They’re Not
Alone?

A Widow Deeply Scarred,
Somebody’s Broken Heart
And A Washed-Out Dream
(Washed-Out Dream)
They Follow The Pattern Of
The Wind, Ya’ See
Cause They Got No Place
To Be
That’s Why I’m Starting With
Me”
The issue of schism is not really a problem of the church of God it is a problem with the people of God. It is our problem when we seek ways to separate instead of finding ways to stay together. It is our problem when we love being right more than we love God. It is our problem when we see the man in the mirror instead of seeing the reflection of God in the mirror. That is why I am listening to the theology of Michael…that’s why I am starting with the man in the mirror.

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