Friday, March 28, 2014

Elevator Pitches and Gettin' Saved

The Acts 8 Moment group has posted a great question for this week's blogforce, they have asked people to write a 250-word "elevator pitch" for the Episcopal church. As Fr. Simmons describes it,
A standard marketing tool is the “Elevator Pitch.”  The scenario behind this tool is that you step into an elevator with someone who is a possible client.  You have the time between when the elevator doors close and when they open at the destination floor to make your pitch.  You don’t have to get all the information across in the pitch – just enough to pique the interest of the person so you can then exchange information and follow up later.  Salesmen and consultants write, memorize, and rehearse their elevator pitch so that when the time comes, they are ready to deliver it. 
This is the sort of thing every Christian should be able to do—state clearly, succinctly, and quickly about why you follow Jesus in the tradition you have chosen. So, in the hopes of also encouraging other to give it a shot (perhaps even some of the great folks at St. John's in Grand Haven), here is mine...

One Elevator Pitch
Around ten years ago, I was hungry to follow Christ but finding the Christianity that surrounded me increasingly… insufficient.

Then I found the Episcopal Church.

I discovered a tradition that was concerned with more than the most recent fad in worship or spirituality. They prayed from a book! But the prayers in that book were rich and full, strained through hundreds of years of Christian experience. They believed God actually showed up—actually showed up!—in water and bread and wine. And they believed structure was not just a necessary means to an end. They believed structure could be a way for the Spirit to move.

That is, they believed God actually showed up in God’s people. Though they clearly adored much that was old and beautiful, they knew that those rich traditions could not contain the God of Abraham & Sarah, the God of countless fearless martyrs and broken sinners that spanned thousands of years.

So when they saw God in gay and lesbian relationships, they were willing to acknowledge that those GLBT Christians actually had the Spirit. It made that young former-evangelical feel uncomfortable for a while… but then I spent time around some of those GLBT Christians and saw godliness.

I decided to stay. Not just because I liked old and ancient things. Not just because I thought it was important to listen to God’s voice. But because I knew that the Episcopal Church could help me see a God who was still saving me.

Alright, what's your elevator pitch?

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