Monday, August 31, 2020

“God did this so that they would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him, though he is not far from any one of us. ‘For in him we live and move and have our being.’ As some of your own poets have said, ‘We are his offspring.’” —Acts 17:27-28

In Acts 17, the apostle Paul arrives in the city of Athens. While waiting in Athens for the arrival of some co-workers, Paul observes the religious practices of the city’s people. Paul is on a mission from God, so naturally he decides to spend time in both the local synagogue and marketplace, trying to persuade anyone who’ll listen of the truth of the gospel of Jesus Christ: that there is one God who is Lord over the whole earth and desires a relationship with each and every one of us through the work of his Son.

Eventually, Paul is invited to an elite philosophical forum. While speaking to this group, he contrasts the true God who made all of us with false “gods” built by human hands. Paul quotes Greek philosophers who, despite not yet knowing the one true God, spoke wise words about our relationship to God. Idols (things we pretend are God) are always our own creation. By contrast, the true God, the Father of Jesus Christ, made each of us and all that we know. He is the creator, and we are his creation. Our lives are his handiwork.

There’s a lot going on in this story of Paul’s time in Athens. For today though, let’s keep it simple: You have life because God has given you life. When you move, you move in God’s world with the body God has given you. Your very being is the product of God’s intentional act to create a world. And God created that world so that he could love that world.

You are not alone. You’re not disconnected from the source of life. You’re not an accident. God is not far from you. You are you because God wants you to be you. You are his child, a claimed, beloved child of the one true God and King.

So today, let’s live like it. Let’s remember that every move we make, we make as God’s children. “In him we live and move and have our being.”

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