God is different from us. His thoughts, His ways, His perspectives are different from ours. In fact, He is so different that He cannot be known by us unless He chooses to be known. Everything we know about God is because God has chosen to reveal it to us. What He does reveal is how different He is and that how, by coming to know Him personally, we too become different. Indeed, we become so different from those without a personal relationship with God that we stand out and often find ourselves in conflict with a secular worldview. What the Church has to offer the world is found in its difference from the world. The world needs the Church but what happens when this difference is eroded by the delusion of sameness? Simply, the Church then has little or nothing to offer the world that the world does not already have. Sooner or later, it becomes impotent and irrelevant. Yet, by not fearing its own difference and by having confidence in the difference released through the gospel and the Spirit, the Church can offer wisdom unattainable by any other means or agency to wider society. My passion is that the Church would discover and share its wisdom about people with intellectual disabilities; people who bring the gift of difference. The Church needs to sing a new song. First it needs to learn it. Yet, in reality, the power of people with intellectual disabilities often stuns and/or scares the Church. Practice (finding solutions) is sought without theology (forming a spiritual foundation) and ecclesiology (facing up to what/who Church is for). Do we simply need to re-discover how revolutionary we are? Perhaps my young daughter Amy (who has Down syndrome) can help? Continue reading
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