Romans 15 :7 NIV "Accept one another, then, just as Christ accepted you, in order to bring praise to God"
For too long the church has been known as a place of rejection, judgment, and condemnation. This is the consequence of mixing grace with law, which makes people fearful of their heavenly Father. Under the law, they prayed for the day when the LORD would "make his face shine on you and be gracious to you" (Numbers 6:25). The good news is, you and I are living in that day. He is looking at us and smiling from ear to ear. We are the accepted and a member of "the accepting church".
I recently read this and thought it would be a perfect way to open a Sunday morning church service…
We extend a special welcome to those who are single, married, divorced, widowed, gay, rich, poor, yo no hablo ingles. We love crying newborns, people who are skinny as a rail, or those who could afford to lose a few pounds. You're welcome here if you are just browsing, just woke up, or just got out of jail. If you can sing like a rock star or can’t carry a note in a bucket. We don’t care if you’re in church every Sunday, or haven’t been in church since little Joey’s baptism.
If you blew all your offering money at the casino, you’re welcome here. We offer a special welcome to those who think the earth is flat, work too hard, don’t work, can’t spell or came because Grandma is in town and wanted to go to church. We welcome soccer moms, football dads, starving artists, tree-huggers, latte-sippers, vegetarians, and junk-food eaters. We welcome those who are in recovery or still addicted. We welcome you if you’re having problems or you’re down in the dumps or if you don’t like “organized religion.” We’ve been there too.
We welcome those who are inked, pierced or both. We’re glad you’re here if you could use a prayer right now, had religion shoved down your throat as a kid, or got lost and wound up here by mistake. We welcome visitors, seekers, doubters, bleeding hearts … and you! Welcome home! We accept you just as Christ accepted us!