Pause

What’s on your list?

Your grades, your place on the team, how popular you are, what kind of car you drive, how many followers you have on Instagram?

You know that list — the one filled with the things we use to describe ourselves, to make us stand out, to remind us we are someone.

Except God isn’t really interested in all that. God is interested in who we are without all that stuff.

God, who favors the lowly over kings. God, who says the last shall be first and the first shall be last. God, who is recognized not by a crown, but by wounded hands and feet.

God, who wants us to add to our lists (and lives) words like love, forgiveness, grace, and honesty.

So, what’s on your list?

Let’s see what God may want to add…

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Listen

But now set aside these things, such as anger, rage, malice, slander, and obscene language. Don’t lie to each other. Take off the old human nature with its practices and put on the new nature, which is renewed in knowledge by conforming to the image of the one who created it. In this image there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcised nor uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave nor free, but Christ is all things and in all people.

Colossians 3:8-11

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Think

At what point in your life have you learned all there is to know? How old will you be when you’re absolutely confident about all the answers? When will you be completely sure about all things, including all things about your faith?

Our culture honors those who appear to have all the answers, who speak with certainty, and who offer easy, quick solutions to the big problems.

Examples of faithful Christians, however, offer us another option.

Faith is asking questions to which we don’t have easy answers and sitting with the not knowing. Faith is being awestruck by the vastness of creation, of our place in it, and of God. Faith is being renewed in knowledge by realizing how much we don’t know (and likely will never know in this earthly life).

Renewal asks us to start again, to become beginners. That doesn’t mean leave all of what we’ve learned behind. It does mean allowing God to show us new understandings as we grow in faith. Renewal reminds us we have much to learn from other children of God.

Laurie Brock

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Pray

Holy God, from whom all true knowledge proceeds: Grant that by your inspiration I may open my mind and heart to your wisdom, always learning more of your love from those who make this earthly pilgrimage with me; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

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Go

The night before Jesus is handed over to his crucifixion and death, he gathers with his friends to share bread and wine. And he reminds them to love.

“I give you a new commandment, that you love one another,” Jesus tells them and us.

Love invites us to seek what matters – our relationship with God – and reminds us we encounter God in all those we meet.

Jesus knew that love isn’t always an easy choice. He lived it. And he believes in us enough to ask us, “Will you love one another?”

Will you?

And if you will, how will you live that love each moment, day, and choice in your life?

Laurie Brock

Laurie Brock serves as the rector of St. Michael the Archangel in Lexington, Kentucky. She is an active blogger on the messiness of faith and love at dirtysexyministry.com, a contributor (Celebrity Blogger) for Lent Madness (lentmadness.org), and a coach for clergy and laity on using social media to spread the Gospel. When she isn’t preaching, writing, or tweeting, she’s riding her horse Nina.

Things Done And Left Undone: Jesus Calls Us

Ken Medema

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