Another crazy week, with awful news in the headlines: Gun violence at a baseball park, a shooter targeting people whose views are different than his, a child sent home in a coma after being sentenced to hard labor for expressing through his actions a view contrary to that of a foreign government, another shooting in a workplace by an employee who feels overworked. When will it stop?
Tonight the Bible opened to one of Paul’s speeches in Acts:
“But now I know that none of you to whom I preached the kingdom during my travels will ever see my face again. And so I solemnly declare to you this day that I am not responsible for the blood of any of you, for I did not shrink from proclaiming to you the entire plan of God. Keep watch over yourselves and over the whole flock of which the holy Spirit has appointed you overseers in which you tend the church of God that he acquired with his own blood. I know that after my departure savage wolves will come among you, and they will not spare the flock. And from your own group, men will come forward perverting the truth to draw the disciples away after them. So be vigilant and remember that for three years, night and day, I unceasingly admonished each of you with tears. And now I commend you to God and to that gracious word of his that can build you up and give you the inheritance among all who are consecrated. I have never wanted anyone’s silver or gold or clothing. You know well that these very hands have served my needs and my companions. In every way I have shown you that by hard work of that sort we must help the weak, and keep in mind the words of the Lord Jesus who himself said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’”
Paul warns us that there are wolves among us. For more than 2000 years, there have been wolves among us who try to pervert the truth and pull us away from God. I think we often feel like we are living in an era worse than the past, but maybe that is just because for the first time in history we see 24/7 all of the bad things that happen anywhere in the world. Imagine if we instead focused on all of the good stories.
I believe we are becoming more faithful — or maybe I am just noticing it more because I am being more faithful. I am thinking about God more. I wear part of His prayer on a noticeable bracelet which reminds me and, hopefully, others of His plan and His will. I notice others who are sharing their faith either by words or actions. I notice God’s goodness. It changes my perspective about the bad in the world. I know it is still there, but I know there is a force more powerful. There are so many good people in the world who are doing their part to spread God’s message, to help the weak and to live by his gracious word. There is good — much more good than evil. Let’s celebrate that!
I know you have plans for us. Thank you for giving us free choice. I choose you. I wish everyone would choose you. Help me to serve others, to help the weak and to keep in mind your word. Help me to share my faith so others can see the good in the world.