Friday, November 30, 2018

All Things in Common

Today's Reading:
Deuteronomy 4:1-49
Acts 2:1-47
Psalm 49:1-20
Click on Text Link to Read Online

Focus Verses: Acts 2:42-45
42 They devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching and to the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. 43 Everyone was filled with awe, and many wonders and miraculous signs were done by the apostles. 44 All the believers were together and had everything in common. 45 Selling their possessions and goods, they gave to anyone as he had need.


The two short passages in today's reading are long on challenging things to think about. The community described sounds so intense and radical, just the way I would expect the beginning of something as amazing and explosive as Christianity to be. But what of these experiences of the early church should be a part of my church experience today?

A wedding day is one thing, but living out a marriage over years and decades is quite another. Similarly, the first days of the church are not the same as living out Christian community over many centuries and across many cultures. When I attend a wedding service, the songs, vows, scriptures, promises, and the faces of a young couple make me think about my thirty-some years marriage. In the same way, reading Luke's description of the first days of the church helps me think about being part of the church two thousand years later.

Response and Action:
I can and need to be devoted to the apostles teaching. By reading and studying the New Testament scriptures, I can follow the instruction and the example of the apostles. I can follow the patterns and precedents of the early Christians. I can and need to be devoted to fellowship. By faithful and self-giving involvement in Christian community, I can help, support, and encourage others. I can and need to look back to the early days of the church with awe and wonder. And today, I can still expect God to be at work in my life and my church in miraculous ways that inspire and amaze.

O God, thank you for your church. Help me to seek you with all my heart, to share my life with others in generous, authentic, and meaningful ways, and to serve others in the power and grace of Jesus. Thank you for the church. Help the church of today be a shining testimony of your truth and grace. Help me to be a devoted and giving member of the Christian communities I'm a part of. Through Christ, I pray. Amen.

Spiritual Formation Verses: Psalm 133:1
1 How good and pleasant it is when God’s people live together in unity!

Life Together
by Dietrich Bonhoeffer

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