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Are You Mayor of the Center of the World?
by Tom Goodman
August 5, 2015

Jacques Istel thinks he lives at the center of the world.

He is the mayor of Felicity, California.  Twenty people live in the town in an empty corner of California near Yuma, Arizona.  But a tiny population and remote isolation hasn't diminished Mayor Istel's estimation of the place.  In the mid-1980s, Mayor Istel showed up at the meeting of the supervisors of Imperial County and asked them to officially declare that the Center of the World was located at his town.  They did so.

To mark the Center of the World, Mayor Istel built a 21-foot-tall pink marble pyramid.  For $1, tourists can enter the pyramid, stand on the official Center of the World marker, and get their picture taken with the mayor of the Center of the World.

We've all run for office as the mayor of the center of the world, haven't we?  We've all had points in our lives where everything has to revolve around us.

That's why Matthew 18 makes us so uncomfortable.  In that chapter, Jesus tells us that we have to humbly take responsibility for each other if we're going to be a church that pleases him.

What is our responsibility to each other as believers?

For some of us, that may seem like a strange question.  The consumer mentality of our culture has completely infected us to the point that we even see church involvement like picking a restaurant or a health club.  For some of us our only question is, "What can this organization do for me?  Do they have the goods and services I want, at the time I want, in the style I want?  What can this place do for me?"

But the Bible tells us over and over again that we have responsibility for each other.  The phrase 'one another' or 'each other' is used over fifty times in the New Testament.  We are commanded to love each other, pray for each other, encourage each other, admonish each other, greet each other, serve each other, teach each other, accept each other, honor each other, bear each other's burdens, forgive each other, sing to each other, submit to each other, and be devoted to each other.

This Sunday, come and learn how to do this from Matthew 18.  It's Week 6 of our study, "The Church You've Always Longed For."  Join us at 10!


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