Week 3 of a six-week series called Expanding the Table. The early followers of Jesus struggled with not knowing where God was leading them and how to do the mission and ministry of Jesus, while still wanting to hold onto their traditions and rituals even when it excluded others who wanted to be in relationship with Jesus and the larger gathered people of God. The church, the body of Christ, the larger community was divided. The teachings of Jesus came secondary to human motivations, agendas and interpretations. Throughout history, the Church has struggled with this. And yet, here, the apostles came together - from wherever they were in the known world, they travelled back to Jerusalem to listen to each other, to speak thoughtfully to each other, to have good healthy relationships with good and healthy civil discourse. Grace was the priority. Sharing the good news in love was the priority. Being a model of Jesus’ inclusiveness and welcome was a priority. It was a core value.