Posted by on Dec 30, 2019 in Community, Featured, Television Ministry, Uncategorized |

Happy New Year! First Church will begin 2020 with “Sacred Resistance”. January is the first month the Traditional Plan, that was passed at the Special General Conference in 2019, will be in effect. UMC NEXT is encouraging local churches to follow monthly themes leading up to General Conference 2020. January- Resistance, February- Love, March- Lament, April- Resurrection, May-Witness. Although the harm caused in the global Methodist church is significant, there are many ways that living our lives as Christians today requires sacred resistance. Each week in this series we will follow lectionary texts that show us how the Bible is filled with examples of resisting harm and sharing radical love. The study guide for each week will include practical ways to implement sacred resistance in your life, like writing to representatives, participating in local marches, and attending Martin Luther King Jr. events around Wichita. This lifestyle of sacred resistance is our Christian calling, and by beginning the new year with sacred resistance we will orient our lives toward Christ’s love and transformation. If you are looking for a personal study to enhance the series, Ginger Gaines-Cirelli’s “Sacred Resistance; A Practical Guide to Witness and Dissent,” is an excellent book! A website to keep up with throughout the series is, https://resistharm.com/. Be sure to check First Church’s Facebook page and website frequently through this series as there will be updates on local ways to resist in Wichita!

January 5

“Resistance as Non-Compliance”

Jeremiah 31: 7-14, Matthew 2: 1-12

January 12

“Resistance as the Underground”

Isiah 42: 1-7, Matthew 3: 13-17

January 19

“Resistance as Protest”

Isaiah 49: 1-7, John 1: 29-42

January 26

“Resistance as the Movement”

Isaiah 9: 1-4, Matthew 4: 12-23

Our resistance is ‘sacred’ because it is driven not primarily by self-interest or fear or even only a benevolent wish for the good of an oppressed group. It is ‘sacred’ because it is driven by God at work in and through us. It is ’sacred’ because it is grounded in God’s vision of wholeness—a wholeness that embraces difference and delights in the surprises of unlikely friendship, a wholeness that calls us to take up the cross, a wholeness that is worth our suffering and sacrifice. When it is God who inspires our action, sustains our action, and provides the ultimate vision that is the goal of our action we are engaged in ‘sacred’ resistance.”

-Ginger Gaines-Cirelli, Foundry UMC Washington, DC