Welcome to the Eighth Episcopal District website. We are pleased you have decided to visit with us. On this site you will find information about the MIGHTY Eighth Episcopal District which is comprised of 226 churches within the state of Texas and Jamaica. It is our desire that you will find this site useful and informative and that you will have an opportunity to learn more about us and the wonderful things God is doing in the Eighth Episcopal District. God bless you as you take this time to visit with us.
Senior Bishop and Mrs. Lawrence Reddick
Don’t Limit God
By Senior Bishop Lawrence Reddick
Yes, there is a message about God at Christmas, and the message is this: God pushes beyond all limits in order to reach into human lives and make us whole.
“In the past,” the author of Hebrews says, “God spoke to our forefathers though the prophets at many times and in various ways, but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son …” (Hebrews 1:1-2a, NIV). Although this passage of Scripture says nothing about the manger and the birth in Bethlehem, it tells in its way the core message of Christmas: “God was in Christ, reconciling the world to himself” (2 Corinthians 5:19).
God broke the ordinary understanding of possibilities when God posited Godself in humanity and took upon himself the form of humanity in Jesus. To be the Son of God, to be Immanuel (“God with us”), to be the express image of the living God in human flesh – these things broke our limited understandings of God; God broke out of our box to be sovereign.
Two questions arise for me. The first is, “What will God do to reach us?” The birth of Jesus in Bethlehem and His life of fulfillment as the Christ, the Messiah, tells me that God pushes beyond the limits of our understandings to reach us. For me, the story of Christmas tells me that God will do anything God chooses to reach us. The second question carries me to a deeper sense of gratitude; which is to say to myself, “What will God NOT do to reach us?”
Some who reads these words will remember when they thought they were “unworthy” of God’s love, God’s unmerited grace, and God’s intervening mercy. Some who read will even believe that they cannot be saved because they are so far away from God’s kingdom. But God broke the limits of human understandings centuries ago when God brought good news to the house of Zechariah, telling him and Elizabeth that they would participate in God’s new drama of God’s redemption; and God likewise disturbed shepherds in the fields, men who were eeking out their meager existence, minding their vocational business, by telling them, “Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord.”
God reached the shepherds; God reached the priest and his family; God reached the faithful waiting in the temple; God reached the sages from afar who followed an unusual star. God reached them. God likewise reaches for us.
God’s desire is to reach us. You may say we are too far off. You may say that we are not reachable; not lovable; not redeemable. Believe me when I say that God knows no barriers … or maxims … or diseases … or perils that can limit God. So here is the last question: How far does God need to go to reach you? This Christmas, embrace God’s embrace of you; receive God’s faith in you; and trust God’s love for you.
Lawrence L. Reddick III