What questions would you ask God if you had the opportunity? The Sunnyside Church in Portland, Ore., has opened its doors as a place people can come together to pose questions, have important conversations and explore possible answers. In February, the church held a seminar entitled Questions I'd Like to Ask God every Friday and Saturday evening. There were also Saturday-morning sessions entitled Journey of the Heart.
Jim Robertson, pastor and writer; Scott LeMert, Sunnyside senior pastor; and Jonathan Russell, Sunnyside associate pastor, spoke for the evening sessions. JoAnne Chitwood, author, film producer and registered hospice nurse, presented on Saturday mornings.
Evening session themes posed thought-provoking questions, such as "How could a loving God like You allow suffering and evil?" "Do all religions lead to You?," and "How can I be sure the Bible is true?"
Sabbath-morning sessions focused on transforming painful experiences into healing opportunities, where our actions come from, living authentically and the power of friendships.
The seminars were also streamed live on the church website. Those watching online could chat with Sunnyside pastors during the presentation to ask for clarification, pose questions or share thoughts.
The goal of the seminar was to generate conversations about God, foster a love for and working knowledge of the Bible, and initiate fellowship between church members and people from a largely unchurched community. Approximately 20 guests attended and nearly double that amount tuned in online.
The next series will be on the church website, www.sunnyside-sda.org, under "Media" and "Ask God." This will also include the Journey of the Heart series.