When the Catch is a ‘Catch-all’

th-18As the Catch, we are truly a “Catch-all.” That means all are welcome. Seekers, strugglers, non-believers, other-believers, and, of course, committed believers … you can be and say whatever you want here. That’s why we call it the Gospel of Welcome.

Being right is not such a big deal here, probably because we’re not always sure what “right” is. If by “right” you mean a predetermined way of thinking about everything that makes us all alike … you won’t find that here. If by “right” you mean the truth as we are coming to know it … that would be a lot closer. If by “right” you mean Jesus (because He said He is the truth), that would be closer, too, but who has a corner on Jesus? We certainly don’t. If anyone says they have a corner on Jesus, that would be a sure sign that they don’t. That’s why the Catch is a Catch-all, because we are all in process. It’s at the end of everything that God separates the sheep from the goats, not along the way. Along the way, we’re a bunch of bleating woolly animals who aren’t sure who we are, or where we’re going. If you’re wooly, and you bleat, you can join us. We’re a Catch-all.

Just this morning, Dana wrote: “I believe Jesus died for my sins. My husband is Jewish so he does not believe the same as I believe and I don’t think that means he is not going to be saved. My daughter married a man whose last name is Hosseini. He is not Muslim but I am sure many of his family on his father’s side are. I do not believe that being Muslim or Buddhist doesn’t mean you won’t be with God when you die.” I agree and here’s why: It’s where a person ends up that matters, not where they started, or even where they were or are along the way. You can start anywhere and end up with Jesus, and that’s not up to us; that’s up to God. That’s why the Catch is a Catch-all. You can walk with us wherever you are along the way. There’s nothing that disqualifies anyone.

I once wrote this in a song: “Jesus is the only way, but there’s more than one way to Jesus.” How many ways are there to Jesus? As many ways as there are people who get there. I don’t know your way, but you are welcome to walk with us along it. Gays, straights, Muslims, Buddhists, atheists, agnostics; it makes no difference — you can walk with us. We’re a Catch-all. And not only that: if you’re a human being, we love you. And that’s that.

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9 Responses to When the Catch is a ‘Catch-all’

  1. Rebecca says:

    And THAT is why I love you and the whole Catch family!!

  2. Priscilla says:

    I’m so glad I am a member of this wooly, bleating family called Catch.

  3. Ralph Gaily says:

    ….and where does “repentance” fit in to the catch all ?

    • Ralph Gaily says:

      any response to my question ?

      • bobnearseattle says:

        According to Jewish tradition, there are four components of repentance: feeling regret for past sins; stopping sinful behavior; confessing before God; and resolving not to sin in the future. As Psalm 34 entreats, we must “turn from evil and do good.” A change of heart and acknowledgement of our sin must be accompanied by a change in our behavior.

        We find a similar invitation to repent and “turn from evil” in the book of Isaiah. In Chapter 55, Isaiah extends God’s invitation to repentance and redemption. By looking at the verbs in verses 3–7, we get another glimpse into God’s heart. First, we are invited to come to God (v. 3) and to listen to Him so “that your soul may live.” Second, we are to seek God while He can be found and to call upon Him. There is a sense of urgency to our need to repent—this is not to say that God will move away from us, but rather our tendency is to move away from Him. Finally, we are urged to turn to the Lord, to forsake our evil ways, for then God will have mercy on us and “freely pardon” us.

        What a beautiful—and encouraging—invitation. But it is up to us to accept that invitation and to act upon it. When we have truly repented, a burden is lifted from our hearts. Our soul is cleansed, and our inner turmoil caused by our sinfulness is replaced with spiritual tranquility and inner peace. We have tasted God’s goodness and we are rewarded by an even greater desire to pursue goodness and righteousness.

        And we will know we have achieved true repentance when we choose not to sin in circumstances where we might previously have sinned.

        What a divine miracle, a profound mystery, and a true demonstration of grace! Give thanks to God today that His invitation is open to us, and as the psalmist writes, “The LORD is near to all who call on him, to all who call on him in truth” (Psalm 145:18).

        Excerpted from “Holy Land Moments – True Repentance”:

        Hope this helps – Shalom! 🙂

    • jwfisch says:

      Repentance is turning from the bad and picking up the good. It’s what we are all called to do to follow Christ, but it is not a repentance at the price of honesty. It is my experience in Christian circles that there is way too much assumption that we have already repented and are now doing the right thing than there are people actually doing it. And those who are are humbled greatly by their own sin to realize the only good in their life is that which comes from God. And they will be the first to remind us of that.

  4. bobnearseattle says:

    “How good and pleasant it is when God’s people live together in unity!”
    — Psalm 133:1

  5. Ralph Gaily says:

    well said bobnearseattle…. thanks for the clarity.

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