Life is a School of Love... Welcome to Bethany United Methodist Church, where love makes the difference. “…God is love.” 1 John 4:8
What Bethany knows about God is that God is love. And even more, God is a community of love. Bethany is part of God’s community of love and we welcome you to share in God’s love, here with us on James Island.
God didn’t give us His love to keep - but to give away. Finding new and creative ways to share God’s love is the spiritual adventure we are on. Come with us!
Life isn’t perfect, we aren’t perfect, but we are learning to love like Jesus loves, sacrificially.
Because life gets complicated, we keep our time together and worship simple. As the Apostle Paul recommended to the Romans, (12:9,10), we…“Love sincerely. Hate evil. Hold on to what is good. Be devoted to each other like a loving family.”
None of us were meant to journey through life alone. Come find strength for your journey, among the spiritual community of Bethany UMC, where love makes the difference.
"God's Answers to Everybody's Questions"
I recently read a book entitled, "Unnecessary Pastor" by Marva Dawn and Eugene Peterson. The premise is that what occupies both the church and the pastor according to culture is unnecessary to our life in God. We are tasked daily with all sorts of burdensome responsibilities that may be necessary according to culture (updating our image online, making statements and offering opinions, staying in touch through social media, etc.), but is unnecessary for the best life God intended for all of humanity.
Everybody wants the best life possible. How do we get it? The church has the answers, God's answers, and is actively contemplating them as we listen to God together.
Everybody asks, "Who am I?" We at Bethany know God has given us a Good Word, the gospel, symbolized by baptism, that each person is beloved of God, made in his image, and adopted into his family by grace.
Everybody wants to make sense of one’s life and answer the question, "How does it all fit together?" At Bethany our Christian meta-narrative, our God story, is that God created the world and then God created a special people for himself (through Abraham and Sarah and all their children in faith) for the sake of the world, to bless the world.
Everybody is looking for love, looking to answer the questions, ‘To whom do I belong?’ and ‘Whom can I trust?’ Bethany, through the power of the Holy Spirit among us, offers the gift of a genuine community. We don't always get it right; but then we confess when we fail and ask for forgiveness. God is at work in us. We belong to God. Together we are becoming our God-begotten selves.
Everybody is investigating values and wondering, ‘By what shall I live?’ God’s people at Bethany possess a way of life that gives direction for our use of time and money, for our friendships and marriages, for our sense of occupation and vocation, for our priorities.
Everybody is struggling with, "How am I going to cope with the chaos of the world?" and "How can I make my way over against others?" At Bethany, as we follow Jesus, we know that all power rests in God. We submit to the world's power when appropriate but counteract it if necessary, resist it without violence, and exert it graciously.
Everybody is questing for meaning and trying to answer the question, "What is the purpose of my life?" Bethany has discovered the mission of our existence in loving God and glorifying him forever.
Everybody is needing hope, desperate to answer the question, "How can I find the courage to go on?" Each of us at Bethany knows ourself nestled in the loving arms of God. We trust God's Word to us, his promises for our future. We look forward to the day when God will end all evil forever, anticipating his eternal reign by living under his rule now.
This is why we at Bethany continually return to our beloved community "to be reminded of our master story, to sing our truth again, and to pray for empowerment so that we can improvise our Good News in daily life for the sake of our neighbors.”*
*These thoughts were shaped and written by Marva Dawn but accepted, believed, and lived out by Bethany United Methodist Church, God willing.
Bethany United Methodist Church 1853 Maybank Highway Charleston, SC 29412 Office: 843.795.3527