Thursday, October 27, 2011

Realignment

My local Facebook feed has been alight with Conference talk for a few weeks now. First the news that Syracuse and Pittsburgh were moving to the ACC (damn you ACC, for continuing to raid our conference!). Then there was some talk of WVU moving to the SEC, but we were passed over with talk about our low academic standards. Then this week it looked like it was kind of a done deal for WVU to move into the Big 12. However Senator McConnell made a call and put the breaks on that deal, which caused WV senators Manchin and Rockefeller to also stick their noses into it. And of course there is all kinds of huge money at stake, regardless of how it all shakes out.

Needless to say, all of this has been pretty hard on the WVU fans. Are we supposed to be loyal to the Big East? Do we throw our hopes into a conference where the closest school is Iowa? Do we put a hit out on at the folks running the ACC? (The answer to that? Is definitely yes.) So much rejection swirling around, it's hard not to take it personally.

'Cracked Texture 2' photo (c) 2008, Caleb - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/We're just a few days away from Reformation. Growing up Lutheran, this was always one of the biggest days of the year, right up there with Christmas and Easter. The day that Martin Luther nailed his 95 theses to the doors of the Wittenberg Castle Church, protesting the use of indulgences and one of the catalysts for the Protestant movement.

Today, we have over 38,000 denominations of Christianity. Thirty-eight-thousand.

That is some serious shake-up going on.

Disagreements over theology, tradition, money, politics all cause us to constantly fracture and divide. We shift, we realign.

Before his death, Jesus prayed the following for his followers:
I want all of them to be one with each other, just as I am one with you and you are one with me. I also want them to be one with us. Then the people of this world will believe that you sent me. I have honored my followers in the same way that you honored me, in order that they may be one with each other, just as we are one. I am one with them, and you are one with me, so that they may become completely one. Then this world's people will know that you sent me. They will know that you love my followers as much as you love me. (John 17:21-23, CEV)
We don't show God's love through our perfect theology, through our spectacular church services, or through our support of the right political candidate. Jesus said that the way we display it is through our unity in him. That's a realignment I can get behind.

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What football conference is your favorite team in? What are some practical steps we can take to realign under Christ with our Christian neighbors with whom we don't necessarily agree?

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