Thursday, December 02, 2004

I Am The Connection!

Bill W said something very profound to me the other day, the implications of which are still to be completely determined.

He looked me in the eye and said, “Remember, you are the connection. In the absence of a bishop and district superintendents, you are what holds everything together in this mission. You are the Methodist connection.”

That’s quite a charge. I wanted to dismiss it as an overstatement, an exaggeration to make me feel better about my job. But I know he’s right.

At these beginning stages of the Methodist church in Cameroon, the locus of identity and authority rests in the Mission Director.

That is why one of the most important things I must do … is TRAVEL! I have to get on the road, and into each one of our churches as often as possible. I have to appear, show up, be present.

I am the United Methodist Church; I represent the Methodist connection in this part of the world.

But of course, you also are the connection. If you call yourself a United Methodist, then whatever you do, wherever you are, is a reflection on the church and tradition that gave you birth. The Bible says that we know the character of people by their fruits … so what fruit does Methodism bear?

This idea can also be extended to the idea that all Christians are also Christ’s representatives, or ambassadors, on earth. Each one of us are called to bear witness, by our lives, attitudes, and actions, to Jesus Christ, the author and pioneer of our faith.

You are the connection, too!