My friends, I want to say something very important that I believe God has put on my heart — Theology Matters.
Theology by its definition is the study of God. Theos, meaning God, and ology which like many other ologys is the study of the subject to which it is attached. In a longer sense, theology is our beliefs about the nature of God, who God is, and how God interacts and relates with us.
My friends, as a pastor, it has been a hard and full week. As a church family (and staff family), we have experienced so much. We have family who has been in the ER. We have family in the hospital. We have family who have welcomed babies into this world. We have family who have welcomed babies into this world and then had to say goodbye way too soon. We have family who have loved ones nearing the ends of their lives as well.
In everything that happens in life, our theology matters. Theology that hurts people is wrong, my friends because God does not hurt us or cause us pain. Life does, but God does NOT.
Any theology or belief about God that says that God doesn’t love you or care about you is wrong. God loves all of God’s children. Sometimes, God doesn’t like our choices, but God still loves us.
This week, I am very grateful to be a United Methodist in the Wesleyan tradition. I am thankful for our understanding of Prevenient Grace, the grace which God sends out to us even before we realize it. I am grateful that I believe in a God who doesn’t wait for us to come, but comes to us and seeks us out first. I am grateful that we have a theology that believes tragic accidents are not caused by God for a reason that we just don’t understand yet. I am most grateful that we have a theology that believes a newborn baby who tragically died is welcomed right into the loving arms of God, whether or not they were baptized in time or not, or whether or not they were old enough to fully understand God’s grace and welcome it or not.
My friends, it has been a full week. I have written two emails to you, and I have cried while writing each. It has been a full week, and Theology still matters.