Dear Sisters and Brothers,
The Great Fifty Days of Easter began last Sunday and continues through the Day of Pentecost. Among the Sunday readings for Eastertide you will be hearing selections from The Acts of the Apostles and from The Revelation to John.
It probably comes as no surprise to you that these readings represent more than a haphazard choice by the lectionary committee. On the contrary, these biblical books teach us that the resurrection is at once about today and about eternity.
The Acts of the Apostles traces the remarkable growth of the earliest Church. It recounts the perils and power of following Jesus right here on earth. The Holy Spirit creates a new kind of community and transforms individual lives. Love, faith, and hope break out in the unlikeliest places.
All of this are the shockwaves of the resurrection. And those same shockwaves are still rolling through our lives today. Reflect on these lessons from Acts as a vision of what we can be together in Western Louisiana today.
Revelation reminds us that our ministries today take place within an eternal framework. The Lord feeds us each Sunday with his Body and Blood to nourish us for service in the world. He sends us out to feed the hungry, shelter the homeless, visit the prisoner, tend the sick, and defend the weak. We live every day with the desire for God's reign on earth as it is in heaven.
Revelation reminds us that God-and only God-will actually bring in the kingdom. Our good works-motivated and empowered by the Holy Spirit-provide a sign that God is at work, and one day his work will be complete. Jesus feeds and sends us to do the good we can do in anticipation that, when he comes again, his Kingdom will be perfectly established.
Being resurrection people means that we live in love, peace, and joy today and anticipate with confidence that the best is yet to come.
In Christ's Love,
The Rt. Rev. Jacob W. Owensby, PhD, DD