The ministry of the lake
Every time we go to the lake Brad brings a book along as if he’s going to have some magical time where he isn’t watching the kids to read. Sometimes I grab a book too, just to play along with this fantasy.
Even if I had a half an hour of solitude, I would probably spend it people watching. I’m convinced the lake is full of the most interesting people in the county. There are the moms that dip a toe in the water with their toddler, young adults horsing around in the deep end, teenagers getting in trouble, adolescents twirling off the high dive, grandmas waiting in the shade with a towel, leathery ladies frying in the sun and chain smokers at a picnic table.
It you were to encounter some of these people in public, they might be what you refer to as “sketchy”. You may avoid eye contact on the sidewalk or lock your car doors while driving by.
Despite the diversity of the lake crowd, in my 20 some years of swimming there I have never witnessed anything worse than a slew of curse words spoken too loudly. No fights, arguments, or illicit substances.
It turns out the diversity of the lake crowd results in unity.
There is one purpose for going to the lake and it’s to have fun. It doesn’t matter if you like to swim, eat burgers, play putt putt or fish, the lake has it all.
In the bible Paul tell us that unity in the church is going to look a whole lot like diversity. He says that some people will be teachers, some pastors, others prophets, evangelists or apostles and that their jobs are to equip the church until we are one unified body.
I love the lake because it’s fun and unpretentious. Nobody expects you to be who you aren’t and it’s OK if you are still rough around the edges.
Likewise, in the Kingdom of God you are accepted, whether you’re the leathery lady or just dipping a toe in.
Jesus wants you. His desire is for you to have fun and be yourself, stepping into your identity as a child of God. He needs everyone, the rebellious teen, rambunctious adolescent and the waiting Grandmas, for the Kingdom to be fulfilled.
You are desired.