Fourth Sunday in Easter
May 7th 2017
St. Luke’s Episcopal Church
‘they devoted themselves to the apostle’s teaching and fellowship…and to the breaking of bread and prayers.’
In the weekly lections…some of the readings were from Paul’s letter to the Colossians.
Here…Paul outlines what Christian community is about…and how we are to nurture one another in the faith.
In chapter three he says…
“and whatever you do…whether in word or deed…do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus”
we are to bring honor to Christ in all we do and say…
Perhaps…this will lead us to ask…
“what impression of Christ do people come away with when they come to St. Luke’s?”
Now…the Book of Acts comes to us from the hand of St. Luke…with his inquisitive and observant mind.
In Acts Two…he gives us the early history of the church in Jerusalem.
Speaking of how the church grew…in size…in witness…authenticity & faith.
Explicitly stating…the early church was a community which….
“devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to the fellowship of the body…and then in the breaking of bread”.
The church was a ‘eucharistically centered’ people.
Asking its members to gather to learn…pray…& be prepared to change inwardly and outwardly by their faith in Christ.
Luke observed…that Christ-centered communities sought out others…. wanting to learn from them. And…that they were inherently open minded.
It is our responsibility to help one another at ‘St. Luke’s’…
God’s will for this place is that we work together in the coming months & years.
This brings me to the same point that St. Paul was teaching to the Colossians…
To be Christlike…means that we are to change for good.
There is always this battle between good and evil going on inside each of us…
the Cherokee shamans of North America observed that the spiritual dichotomy we face…has two cups.
The cup of evil…
anger, envy, jealousy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority and ego.
And the cup of good…
Joy, peace, love hope serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion and faith.
The spiritual question this presents is simple…which of these two cups do we fill drink from?
In the months to come…let us drink from the cup of goodness…
devoting ourselves as St. Paul urged…
to the apostles’ teachings… fellowship…the Eucharist…and the prayers…so that others may find Christ…in us!
and I say these things to you in the name of God: Father, Son & Holy Spirit