This post has been on my heart for a while, but has taken me a while to put into words. After thinking this through, and deciding how exactly I would communicate what started out as a list of frustrations, I have come to peace with starting with an apology to several groups of people.

To my brothers and sisters in Christ:

I apologize for so many years of believing that the ‘tribe’ I am a part of is the only right tribe in the Christian world. In my youth I came to the conclusion that the narrow path that Jesus spoke of was neatly defined by the doctrine that I believed. This meant that anyone who didn’t believe what I believed and worshipped the way I worshipped was, at best, a ‘poor misguided soul’. I spent too much time comfortably defending my position and not nearly enough time contributing to the kingdom. This thinking was first rattled in college, when I had a roommate from a different faith tradition. He spent more time in the word, more time in prayer, and more time living a life of worship than anyone else I had ever met. I was forced to ask the question for the first time, “How can this not be acceptable to God?” I have continued to have abandoned the old way of thinking as I spend more time with friends from different veins of faith. As I see their hearts in action and experience their love for God and the kingdom I am continually stirred in my soul. Over the years these experiences have haunted me every time I have heard anyone grandstand an ‘our way is the right way’ attitude. I think of how many people I have excluded from God’s grace over the years and am very humbled, and sad. I pray that you all will accept my apology as I  continue to strive towards a Christlike spirit of inclusion as opposed to exclusion.

To my friends and neighbors:

I apologize for the times where my heart, actions and attitude get in the way of you experiencing God’s love. I understand that I have been a stumbling block to your faith, and am once again completely humbled in asking for your forgiveness. I also apologize on behalf of my brothers and sisters in Christ who have acted likewise. As I spend more time focusing on on my relationship with Christ, I pray for your patience as that relationship continues to challenge me to focus more on loving others as God has loved me. Also, that I will spend more time focusing my heart on the things that Christ would focus on.

To God:

I apologize for the way I have misrepresented you to the world. My heart aches thinking about how many of your children I have hurt or excluded from your grace. I pray for your forgiveness as I strive to draw closer to you before I dare presume to speak or act on your behalf. I ask that you continue to liberate me from the confines of my own dogma and allow me to live more fully in Your word and spirit.

One love, one heart


Author: djiverson

I am a Christian, son, brother, artist and friend. I am blessed to be the Youth & Family Minister at New Vintage Church in San Diego. Know You Are Loved.

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