Thursday, July 09, 2009

Acts 10: 17-33

You will remember that today’s reading comes after Peter’s vision of unclean food descending from heaven accompanied by the command, “Rise and eat!” In the verses for today, we find Peter trying to figure out what to make of this vision.

We are told that he was “wondering” what it meant; the NRSV says that Peter was “puzzled” by it. Just a couple verses further we see that he was “still thinking about the vision”; turning it over and over in his head.

Two thousand years later, we might well think the message was obvious, and wonder ourselves why he struggled so with its meaning. Yet what God was asking Peter to do was so far out of the box that it never even entered Peter’s mind.

So, while Peter was pondering, God was acting. He brings the answer right to Peter’s door in the form of three men and an invitation. Suddenly Peter gets it; “God has shown me that I should not call anyone profane or unclean.”

I wonder how many times this scenario has been repeated in the lives of God’s people and the church they constitute. How many times are we wondering about a word from God when God is already acting?

Is it really so hard to see what God is doing in the world, and what He expects of you and of me? And yet so often our life as individuals, and the life of the larger church to which we belong, is marked more by inactivity than bold initiatives to proclaim God’s love for all the world to hear. Too often we’re not very good at getting beyond the church walls, or even making God’s love known to everybody within them.

Might I be so audacious as to ask you if you are clear about God’s vision for you? I’m not talking about some general and diffuse understanding that amounts to no more than comfortable life as usual. Do you know what He wants you to be doing right here and right now?

And then perhaps the tougher question still:

Are you doing it?

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