Lent Day 22: Slow Down


Romans 10:9

9 because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.

Our weeks are so busy sometimes that we can’t wait to get to the weekend to rest, and get some things done around the house.  We make lists for groceries, for projects around the house, bills to pay.  There is always something to do.  On our jobs we have a performance evaluation of what is required to be successful, get a raise or promoted. And it seems during COVID the lists at work and home have gotten longer.  But in our text today and in our relationship with God he really simplified things for us.

As we move through our Lenten journey lets allow the Lord to slow us down and simplify our lives, even as it relates to beginning and maintaining a relationship with him. 

In our text today Paul reminds us there are only two prerequisites for following Jesus.  The first, confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord. This simply means that Jesus, and not the state, the government, the system, the President, family or friends has a higher loyalty to you than Jesus Christ.  Your full allegiance is committed to him.

The second, believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead. This means that death, the tomb with the heavy stone against it, or even the people that killed him, could not keep him dead.  “Because God, that deep power of life, has shattered the system of death and made all things new.  The Easter claim is not simply about resuscitation but about a new reality in the world that is unrestrained by the force of fear or violence or privilege.”  

Because of what God has done in Christ, Paul shares his deep conviction that, “the Lord is Lord of all and is generous to all who call upon him.” “The defining mark of the Easter world is divine, cosmic generosity that outruns our need and our want and our hope and our desire, to endow us with every good gift, most wondrously the gift of new possibility.”   

All are welcome to experience His divine generosity.  There is no class, culture, racial or ethnic distinction.  No one sits at the back of the bus. We all can have a front row seat.  There is no fear of rejection, or a sign that says, “need not apply” because of God’s generosity.  “God is bringing the world to a new inclusiveness on the basis of God's own generosity. And God is now calling the church to engage that inclusiveness, because all of our preferred distinctions are vetoed at Easter.”    

Galatians 3:27-29 

27 For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ. 28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. 29 And if you are Christ's, then you are Abraham's offspring, heirs according to promise.

Ephesians 2:11-18

11 Therefore remember that at one time you Gentiles in the flesh, called “the uncircumcision” by what is called the circumcision, which is made in the flesh by hands— 12 remember that you were at that time separated from Christ, alienated from the commonwealth of Israel and strangers to the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world. 13 But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ. 14 For he himself is our peace, who has made us both one and has broken down in his flesh the dividing wall of hostility 15 by abolishing the law of commandments expressed in ordinances, that he might create in himself one new man in place of the two, so making peace, 16 and might reconcile us both to God in one body through the cross, thereby killing the hostility. 17 And he came and preached peace to you who were far off and peace to those who were near. 18 For through him we both have access in one Spirit to the Father.

John 6:37

37 All that the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never cast out.

Let today be a new beginning of experiencing the freedom and generosity that only God can offer through Jesus Christ.  

“Dear Power of Life, draw us into your boundary-crossing generosity.  May we be on the way toward others, toward new life, in sync with the one who is Lord of Easter, Amen.”  



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