The Church is not a gated country club, surrounded by rolling green hill golf courses, adorned with perfectly manicured ponds, dotted with foliage, landscaped to perfection - filled with members sipping cocktails at happy hour because they have paid their dues to be there. The Church is more like Chuck’s Hop Shop in Greenwood with the food truck parked out in front. There we find kids playing Jenga, dogs are sleeping or sniffing around, and the neighborhood laughs, sharing real stories together. Some people are discussing the meaning of life. Others are just happy to be around friends. Both the familiar and unknown happening at the same time in the same place. There's a sense of belonging before arriving. That’s a lot like Jesus’ Church. The towel wearing, dusty foot washing Messiah made room for “the least of these.” That’s why we weep during communion and laugh after the benediction. We belong, and he paid the tab. And forgiveness is in the air.

Read more from Alex Early here