Ehrlich is a Lutheran pastor living in Philadelphia, PA. Her writing has appeared at WELCA’s BoldCafe, Luther Seminary’s Center for Stewardship Leaders, and VTS’ Building Faith. Ehrlich blogs about minimalism from a Christian perspective at www.christianminimalism.com and shares inspiration and encouragement to live a more minimal life.
“Community should not always look the same. When we foster a diversity of opinions and backgrounds in our friend groups and in our congregation, we foster a community that is modeled in God. Since God created all of us, we are all made in God’s image. God is in the business of diversity. In fact, God’s description of our future world is the epitome of diversity:
“In the days to come the mountain of the Lord‘s house shall be established as the highest of the mountains and shall be raised above the hills; all the nations shall stream to it. Many peoples shall come and say ‘Come, let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, to the house of the God of Jacob; that he may teach us his ways and that we may walk in his paths.’ For out of Zion shall go forth instruction, and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem. He shall judge between the nations, and shall arbitrate for many peoples; they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks; nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more. House of Jacob, come, let us walk in the light of the Lord!” Isaiah 2:1-5
Doesn’t this description sound amazing? People from all nations are coming to worship and learn about God. Not to mention everlasting peace, where weapons are turned into farming tools and people from all walks of life live in harmony. Isaiah shows us this perfect future world: peace and joy and worship and all nations and types of people coming together to be with God. This is what our world will be like when Jesus returns. This is what we have to look forward to. But this description of all people coming together to worship God isn’t something that’s in the future – it’s what our world can look like today…We can welcome others because Jesus first welcomes us. Interacting with and loving those with whom we don’t always see eye–to-eye can be life-changing and help us to experience all that God has to offer through God‘s beloved children here on earth.”
Christian Minimalism: Simple Steps for Abundant Living
Holy God, thank You for creating us in Your image and calling each one of us to love You and one another. Empower us to recognize Your face in all the people we encounter today. Give us the courage and compassion to love all of Your children and to share Your love in word and deed. In Your holy name we pray, Amen.