May 7, 2016
by Barbara Dilly
Creighton University's Department of Sociology and Anthropology
click here for photo and information about the writer

Saturday of the Sixth Week of Easter
Lectionary: 296

Acts 18:23-28
Psalm 47:2-3, 8-9, 10
John 16:23b-28

Daily Easter Prayer

Celebrating Easter Home

Weekly Guide for Daily Prayer

An Easter Blessing

Easter Joy in Everyday Life

We all can think of those who taught and spoke accurately about Jesus to help us grow in faith.  Then there were others along the way of our faith journey who have explained the Way of God more accurately to us.  Still others have provided great assistance at various points in our lives to help us believe through grace.    This is how we became “church” in the early years after Jesus’ resurrection.  It is also how we are to be church in our contemporary lives.  What I took from the lessons today is that we all need to help each other to better seek and do the Will of God.

At the center of that journey is Jesus.  Jesus as teacher, Jesus as Lord, and Jesus as the one who goes before us.  Jesus is our connection to the Father.  Jesus reminds us in the lessons today, as he is leaving the disciples and this world, that he came from the Father and he is going back to the Father.  To have faith, we must believe that Jesus came from God.  Our professions of love for Jesus must be centered on our belief that he came from and has returned to God. 

To me, those professions of that love and faith in the community of believers in the church empower us to ask God for whatever we need in Jesus’ name and to receive God’s blessings in joy.  It is the gathering of the people of God to sing hymns of praise and gladness that gives us so much confidence in our relationship with God.  That confidence comes through Jesus, who does not leave us alone, but with each other and the knowledge that God loves us. 

Yet, we often forget that love.  We need others to remind us.  And there are many who have not heard.  We need to share that love with them.  That is the work of the church, to teach and speak accurately about Jesus in a way that helps us grow in faith and in love.  We must provide for others assistance to help each other believe through grace.  This was the work of Priscilla and Aquila and the disciples and other early believers.  Those of us who have been instructed in the Way of the Lord have also been given a great commission in addition to the gift of faith.  We are called to help others to know Jesus and the Will and love of God.  And we are also to seek out others who will help us continually grow in our faith.  The work of the church as the community of believers is how we can keep Jesus with us and among us. 

For this work of teaching and seeking each day, we can be truly grateful to God.  God is with us.

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