This past weekend may wife and I were in Melbourne, FL for a state thespian competition. Our daughter and her friends were representing La Villa School of the Arts. While it is always good to experience youth, at a variety of talent levels, courageously taking the stage, it was a conversation with my sister-in-law’s husband that evening which inspired this post.
Jimmy is a pastor at Church of the Beach, which he started on his own. While his past is grounded in Baptist and Southern Baptist theology, Jim’s approach to the faith is less about hell and more about love. The audience is a beach community, easily noted by their Sunday attire.
Conversations focusing on religion are few between myself and Jim, yet he has always been respectful of my belief system, which seems to have fostered a good relationship.
Dinner happened at a wonderful German restaurant, the Cafe Coconut Cove. During our first round of beers (there were only two) I began to discuss how gleaning served to unite people ranging between theists and non-theists. With the patience of a saint, Jim listened as my extended commentary wandered into recent studies on Christians, Agnostics and “Nones”.
When I finally stopped he shared his story of community.