Today's Lectionary Text
Now when they heard this, they were cut to the heart and said to Peter and to the other apostles, “Brothers, what should we do?” Peter said to them, “Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ so that your sins may be forgiven; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. For the promise is for you, for your children, and for all who are far away, everyone whom the Lord our God calls to him.” And he testified with many other arguments and exhorted them, saying, “Save yourselves from this corrupt generation.” So those who welcomed his message were baptized, and that day about three thousand persons were added. They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers.
Awe came upon everyone, because many wonders and signs were being done by the apostles. All who believed were together and had all things in common; they would sell their possessions and goods and distribute the proceeds to all, as any had need. Day by day, as they spent much time together in the temple, they broke bread at home and ate their food with glad and generous hearts, praising God and having the goodwill of all the people. And day by day the Lord added to their number those who were being saved.
This piece of scripture gives us an idea of how the early Christian believers formed and experienced community. The Christian faith is a communal and dynamic reality. Through the work of the Holy Spirit, diverse followers of Christ join together to break bread, fellowship with one another and study scripture in community. In such communal experience and sacred space, some encounter God’s amazing grace of forgiveness and receive baptism. Others receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit who gives them various gifts to fulfill the mission of the kingdom.
How might you, and your church family, form community during this pandemic season where all people can experience God’s amazing grace of forgiveness and redemption?
-Rev. Kalaba Chali
Mercy and Justice Coordinator
Prayer for Reflection
Gracious God, we pray for your Spirit to descend upon us afresh and empower us to unleash collectively the power of the gospel that offers grace, love, and forgiveness for all. Amen.
-Devotion and prayer inspired by Catch the Fire in 50 Days: Joining the Movement of God’s Mission in the World by Blake Busick and Christie Latona, For sermon outlines and worship helps for the season of Easter, go to www.greatplainsumc.org/catchfire.
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