Resource Guides For the Week of 6 April

I marvel at the workings of the radio, car, microwave, cell phone, TV, etc. even though I really do not grasp how they work as they do! I am surrounded by wonders and mysteries that inspire and engage me.

Paul writes: "… and pray on my behalf, that utterance may be given to me in the opening of my mouth, to make known with boldness the mystery of the Gospel." (Ephesians 6.19) This appears, at first glance, to be a strange way of describing the Gospel. But consider this: spirituality in the Roman world was frequently shrouded in "proprietary knowledge" reserved for the elite in secret chambers and hidden rituals. In contrast the Gospel is presented in the New Testament as a "mystery revealed" in public spaces to everyone without distinction.

I am "regretfully amazed" how easily I take the Gospel for granted so that its mysteries do not populate everyday with wonder, awe, and deep gratitude. I know God loves me -- but why He loves me is a mystery. I know that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself -- but why He should choose to do so is a mystery. I know that Christ died on the cross to atone for my sins -- but why God should choose to be satisfied through a sacrifice of His own making remains a mystery to me. I know God's kindness moves me to repent but why He should choose to accept my repentance knowing that I will sin again remains a mystery. My "mystery list" is quite long!

Sunday, (April 6) we celebrated Communion together -- a mystery that celebrates the Mystery! Like any good mystery the end is meant to be surprising. What is the surprise ending of this mystery? It is us! We are the new  Upper Room disciples for whom Jesus offers His life -- body and blood -- knowing that some will deny, others betray, and the rest will abandon. Yet His gracious love, kindness, and tenderness, like gravity (another mystery we do not understand) will draw us and keep us in orbit around Him.

Click here to download a PDF version of this week's Resource Guide.

Click here to download a DOC version of this week's Resource Guide that you can edit.