Daily reading: Acts 15:1-19
Thursday May 18, 2017

Grace is gift that we cannot earn and is not given only to those who go through a ceremony.  More so, the evidence of faithfulness is more than a sign of following a covenant, it is a life of faithfulness. 

The council at Jerusalem continued in the tradition of reinterpreting scripture through the lens of God’s current activity in their lives.  Reminding them and thus reminding us that the church is called to follow rather than direct.
James, a member of the council, then responds after Paul and Barnabas finished speaking.  He turns to Amos chapter 9 verses 11-12, to remind the gathering that part of God’s restoration after the exile and rebuilding of Jerusalem, recognized a place for the Gentiles in God’s kingdom. 

And so in light of the weight of tradition and the current movement of God, the council decides that circumcision will not be required of Gentile converts.  What is surprising is that tradition doesn’t direct the movement forward but rather God’s Spirit does.

Weekly practice: Practice being fully attentive to what other people are saying.  Deeply listen from a place of empathy.  Seek out moments to have conversations in person this week rather than messages through text, email or social media.  Find a place of commonality.

Prayer: Graceful Guide, you call us to fully see and deeply love one another.  May your unconditional love fill us and seep into every moment this day, even in the really difficult ones.  Amen.


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