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People need hope more than ever. As followers of Jesus, we have this promise in Colossians 1:27.....Listen to Radio Podcast featured on Moody Radio April 17 2024 

Tuesday-God at Work

For God, who was at work in Peter as an apostle to the circumcised, was also at work in me as an apostle to the Gentiles. James, Cephas and John, those esteemed as pillars, gave me and Barnabas the right hand of fellowship when they recognized the grace given to me. They agreed that we should go to the Gentiles, and they to the circumcised.

Galatians 2:8,9

For the past week, some people have been digging and installing new fiberoptic cables down out street. Once installed, we’ll be able to download a movie in less than a minute instead of the current three minutes. What will I ever do with all the time I’m saving?

Other than some minor damage to our lawn, everything is fine. But to warn people about possible danger, they’ve put up a bunch of safety cones near where they’ve been working.

Up the street they’re repaving a road that was so badly damaged that your teeth would chatter wherever you drove over it. It didn’t matter if you owned an old clunker, or a brand-new, top of the line luxury car, your teeth were going to have a close encounter with one another because of the bumpy road.

Again, they put up safety cones to warn drivers and pedestrians about the work. But this time, they put out additional flags, large signs, and plastic road barriers.

You see, the greater the work, the more signs there are going to be. The more people involved; you have to tell more people about what’s going on. The larger the project, the greater need there is to tell people about it.

The same is true with God. When he’s at work, he wants people to see it. To know it’s him. It speaks to who he is. When God’s demonstrating his power, there will be spiritual safety cones, and even great big signs, telling people to be on the lookout. Telling them that God’s at work.

God at work. It’s a simple enough of a phrase. Only three words. But it’s a mighty statement about life and how you’ll make choices all day long.

If there is no God, then he can’t be at work. Or if there is a God and he just doesn’t care, then how we look at life will be radically crushed. How we look at life, ourselves, and others will be twisted. If there is no God, then why try to live well? Why help people? Why be kind?

But there is a God. A loving heavenly Father that’s got more than just his eye on us. He’s actively loving us. He’s got his fingers all over our lives. He’s there for you and me at every turn in life.

God was also involved in Peter’s life and service to the Jews. He was also involved in Paul’s life and service to the Gentiles. He showed up bigtime with both of them and put out his safety cones. People heard and hearts were turned to the Lord. There were miracles. There were healings.

But it wasn’t that Peter and Paul were such great guys. That they had graduated at the top of their class, earning their doctorate degrees in Apostleship. It wasn’t that they were smarter or worked harder either?

No. It was all about the grace that had been given. God’s grace is always, always; always given. It’s never, never, never earned. God’s grace is his reaching out to us, leaning into us.

It’s the image that Jesus paints for us in his parable of the prodigal son[1]. The compassionate father missed his son and longed for his return. Perhaps he’d been looking, day after day for all those years. Then, on that one day he sees his son a long way off. And he started running.

But why did he run? Was it to yell? To punish? To unload guilt and shame? No, he ran out of compassion. And not just a little bit of compassion, but he was filled to overflowing with compassion. And how did he greet his lost son? He threw his arms around him and kissed him.

I really don’t get this. How could the father do this? How could he welcome home the son that had torn his heart apart? That had disappointed him? The son had turned his back on his father and walk away.

If you’re looking for logic here, I’m sorry to disappoint you. There is nothing rational about God’s grace. It’s not earned. It’s not deserved. It comes totally from within him. It’s not because we’re so lovable. It’s just the opposite. We’re his enemy[2]. We stink of our selfishness and sin. And yet, he paid the price needed to bring us back to him.

This is the God who loves us. The God who’s been looking for us. The God that wants to run towards us. The God who’s filled with compassion for us.

And when we let him throw his arms around us, he’ll do a work in us. People will see. They’ll have to notice and see that God’s at work.

Noodling Questions

  • How do you respond to the idea that God’s at work in you?

  • Explain how God’s grace fits in with his being at work in you.

  • Does it seem logical for God to be at work in us? In you?

[1] Luke 15:11-32 [2] Romans 5:10

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