Allow Me to Introduce Myself

Allow Me to Introduce Myself June 12, 2023

As I am new this online community the first thing I wish to do is to introduce myself.  My name is Jon Goodwin.  I am a husband.  This summer I will celebrate my 22nd wedding anniversary to my amazing wife Jen.  I am a father.  I have three children.  All three are thriving at life and make me incredibly proud.  I am a pastor.  I have been in fulltime ministry for nearly 20 years and at my current church for over 15 years.


You should also know that I am a Jesus follower.  I believe that Jesus’ call to love God and love people are His primary objectives for my life and the life of all of His followers. 


When Jesus was asked, “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law” He responded with, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.  This is the great and foremost commandment.  The second is like it, you shall love your neighbor as yourself.  On these two commandments depend the whole Law and the Prophets.” (Matthew 22.36-40) I believe that for far too many people who claim to be Jesus followers that the great commandment is looked at not as the great commandment but as the great suggestion.  It often resembles a light switch that people turn off and on at will.  This ought not be.


The articles that you will find on this page that have been written by me will be done so in a way that challenges us together both in how we live and also how we love.  The reason I say that it will challenge us is because the keyboard I am using is my therapist.  It has a unique ability to allow my thoughts, wanderings, confusions, and questions to formulate in a way that never happens when they just stay swirling in my head. 


What you also need to know about me is that I also am an empath.  This causes me to live with a heart bent toward justice.  It causes my heart to break when I see injustice.  Whenever I drive past a prison, I am filled with sadness for those who are incarcerated.  I wonder how long it has been since these men and women behind bars have seen their children and how hopeless it must feel to be treated like human cattle.  When I drive past a prison, I am reminded of a quote by Bryan Stevenson which says, “each of us is more that the worst thing we’ve done.”  Whenever I hear news of a black man getting killed or shot due to the color of their skin I feel as though I will be sick to me stomach.  I also must admit that I am filled with anger when I hear people devalue men like George Floyd.  As if his past somehow justifies his public lynching.  As if Ahmaud Arbery’s trespassing somehow gave license to give him the death penalty.  I wrestle with things.  They keep me awake at night. 


It is my belief that all people have value.  That all people are image bearers of a holy God.  That God was involved in the purposeful creation of all life.  I believe that when Jesus said “Father forgive them for they know not what they do” that He was not just talking of those who nailed Him to the cross but He was speaking of the people whose sins placed Him on the cross.  He was speaking of you and He was speaking of me.


Why do I share all of this?  Well, know that when you approach articles written by me that they are being written from this perspective.  I believe that we must do better.  I believe we can do better. 


Some days it is incredibly hard to love people in this world that we live in.  We live in divisive times, but we must try.  After all, the call to love people is not called the great suggestion, it is called the great commandment.  With that in mind, I invite you to join me as I wrestle through some of the big topics and seek to do so in a way that comes from the perspective of loving God and loving others.  Will you join me?

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