The Island of Misfit Toys & the Beloved Community

God is doing some really cool things this Lenten season.  As you know I have had my fair share of being hurt by people of faith, even hurt by the church collective…but God is doing some cool things in this community.

When I first came to Bethel one of our partners in ministry called us the “island of misfit toys.” I love this metaphor because it connects us in our brokenness.  Many of us have been broken by the church or people we love… Truth is, if you stay around Bethel long enough,I can almost promise that you will be hurt by one of us, including me.  But what I love most about Bethel, is that if you stay and don’t  give up, you will also find the healing.  We recognize our brokenness. Yet we also rally around God’s reconciliation, redemption, and re-forming power that brings us back together.    The “Island of Misfit Toys” is only a partial metaphor for who Bethel is.  We are also the “Communion of Saints”…”The Set Apart”… “The Beloved Community”…  God’s Chosen People.

Bethel means the House of God and has become a profound place of healing.   Thank you for being a community of diversity and difference that seeks deep unity.   I am blessed to walk this journey alongside you.

-Pastor Rustin

  1. Juliette Reply

    This is so right on. I remember my first day at Bethel. Patti gave me a big hug and told me that everyone was welcome and that the congregation was full of happy misfits. So true. I’ve never been happier or felt more welcome in a community!

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