There are Many Expressions

There are expressions of Christianity that will keep me cozy and comfortable, not asking or requiring much of me. Some will exist to pump me up, “feed” me and be wind for my sails to get through the week. Others affirm my ideology and lift up a God who believes a lot like me. All will talk about Jesus, guarantee my salvation, call it discipleship, and use Scripture to do all of it.

Then there are expressions of Christianity that center on Jesus, on the kingship, priestliness, and prophetic in his person and teaching. It recognizes that all of the Scriptures, Hebrew and Christian, testify of him. This version invites me into an understanding of life other than the one I’m managing.

It is less concerned about cozy and comfortable, and more concerned about abiding faithful love and shalom-shaped joy and peaceableness.

It doesn’t aim to pump me up and feed me as much as prepare and form me for the world that is and is to come.

It won’t affirm my ideology, but it will summons me to submit my whole self to the redemptive politics of God’s Kingdom where my allegiance to the reign of Christ is necessary.

It will assure me of unending grace, cover me in the deepest love, expect faithfulness rather than perfection, and guide me into a common life shared by others more than one day a week. This version of Christianity can liberate me into an unexpected life where truth, goodness and justice meet. It will not keep me from suffering and sorrow, but will ground me in hope and a joy of a different kind that overcomes.

There’s so much more. But for now I’ll say it is, at the very least, deeper than the expressions of Christianity we most often settle for. The tragedy is many of us don’t even see it.

About Fred

Fred came to serve greater Williamsburg and WCC as lead pastor in October of 2010 and is grateful to be a part of the family. He is a husband, father, certified trauma professional, S.T.A.R. (strategies for trauma awareness & resilience) practitioner, community organizer, TEDx alum, founder of 3e Restoration, Inc. and co-owner of Philoxenia Culture LLC. He received his B.S. in Ministry/Bible at Amridge University and his Master’s of Religious Education in Missional Leadership from Rochester University. Currently he is a candidate for a Doctorate of Ministry in Contextual Theology in at Northern Seminary in Chicago. Fred has also served as an adjunct professor for Rochester University and Regent University where taught courses in philosophy, ethics, leadership, pastoral care, intro to Christianity, and ethnography. He has also served as a guest lecturer on the subjects of racialized cultural systems, poverty, and missiology at various universities, such as William & Mary and Oklahoma Christian University. Fred has authored on book (Racialized Cultural Systems, Social Displacement and Christian Hospitality) and several curriculum offerings, including The FloorPlan: Living Toward Restoration & Resilience. Fred enjoys hanging out with his family anytime, anywhere. He is deeply grateful for how God graciously works through the Church in all her various forms, despite our brokenness. He is passionate about seeing the last, least, and lonely of every neighborhood, city and nation experience God’s in-breaking kingdom, and come to know Jesus as King. Oh, and his favorite season is Advent and Christmas. Fred is a founding member of the board of directors for Virginia Racial Healing Institute, a member of the leadership team for Williamsburg's local chapter of Coming to the Table, and a member of Greater Williamsburg Trauma-Informed Community Network's Racial Trauma Committee and Training Committee.
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