Connect like Ivy

Hatboro Baptist Church has been talking a lot about connection lately. We believe that God has called us to connect people to God, to others and to our deepest selves that we might be whole. We have been created to be in relationship. Even God exists as Relationship, that is part of the reality of the Trinity. When I think about connection, I think about the way ivy grows. When ivy starts to take over a yard, strands don’t run off by themselves, rather, they intertwine and wrap around. Eventually you cannot even tell where one vine ends and the other begins, the plants has grown into one another’s lives.

Imagine what it would be like if we grew into each other’s lives the way ivy grows together. What would happen? First, we would be willing to share our lives with one another, in fact, we would have to share our lives! Second, we could not ignore the hardships that each other face, if we came to a wall, we would have to climb it together! And third, we would find strength beyond our imagination.

When I was a teenager, we moved into a house that was overrun with ivy. We wanted it OUT! And so we thought we could simply pull it out! That was naïve, to say the least. The strength of those little buggers was awesome! The vines had grown into each other and together they were beyond defeat. In fact, after a couple months, my Dad decided a big patch of ivy was what the yard needed.

Figure 1 Pulling up ivy takes many tools.

So let me ask you, are you connected?  Is the life and love of Christ growing into you and then out to others? Are you developing relationships where you can talk about the Eagles, but even more, you can talk about your broken heart. As I have asked before, “Do you have refrigerator rights in the homes of those you worship with?”

Recently, one of the people who have been working with us on planning ways of implementing the vision of a connected community came to me and said, “I think I want to stop meeting with this group.” I got nervous, had her feelings been hurt? Did she think we were wasting our time? And then she said, “We have been talking about the importance of connecting with people, and I have found a group that goes to Kensington on Saturdays to connect with the residents. I think I want to connect rather than talk about how to connect!”

Wow! That is the kind of thing this Pastor loves to hear.  Are you connected to your neighborhood? Is your life intertwined with God? Are you discovering who you are in Christ? When you are, nothing will be able to take you down.

Go be invasive ivy for Jesus!

Pastor Doug Stratton