Last weekend I enjoyed a major blast from the past. One of my childhood friends had organized a reunion of those of us who spent most of our childhood together on a few acres of country in Southern Arizona. Our folks raised goats, chickens and alfalfa hay on that one horse farm they named Bethel Acres. When we weren’t on mission trips into Mexico with our parents, we found plenty of adventure and opportunities for mischief making on the farm, in the woods or at the Little Red School House where eight grades were taught in one room with a wood burning stove for heat.
Community just happened at Bethel Acres. We worked, played, learned, lost and won together, and today we still refer to each other’s parents as “Uncle Al, Aunt Myrtle, etc. And after more than 50 years since we had all been together at the same time, in some ways it was like picking up where we’d left off. Sure, we’ve all traveled very different paths. A few are involved in traditional churches, several of us are not, a couple are in between. But a common bond was developed in childhood and strengthened in Christ. Through the next few days we shared the journey each of us had traveled and found complete acceptance and understanding. I think that was the case because the bond we shared was deeper than doctrine, philosophical differences or politics. The words that were spoken were the language of the heart rather than the head.
I hear a lot of head talk these days. Many words are said and much energy is expended on nonessentials. Religion creates more ways to avoid spiritual reality than school kids find to avoid homework. Yet the true church is built on the personal and corporate revelation of who Christ is. People who are joined by what their head believes can be separated by a brain fart. Those joined in heart by the Spirit speak the same language even if their words are different. It’s the language of life.