All creation has gifts to offer when it comes to beauty and wonder, but I believe the American West has a unique beauty. I can ride through the expanses of Kansas and head out toward the high deserts of Nevada or New Mexico, and the boundless nature of the space that unfolds before me invites my wondering and dreaming. It calls me to broader thinking and beckons my spirit to soar and my mind to create. The stories almost write themselves as the pictures shift endlessly with the sunlight that invades and fades on the canyon walls.
The apostle Paul became a servant of the gospel by God’s grace that was given to him in power. It would have been hard to forget the bright light, the voice, being blind for three days, and not eating while being set straight on Straight Street. He never forgot how far he had come—from breathing murderous threats against the Lord’s disciples to preaching the boundless riches of Christ that includes the Gentiles.
Paul speaks of the present revelation of God’s mystery, which addresses the expansive nature of God’s gift in Jesus Christ: “The Gentiles have become fellow heirs, members of the same body, and sharers in the promise in Christ Jesus.” This revelation has broadened Paul’s mind, enabling a spiritual soaring that goes far beyond the early church’s understanding of the gospel message!
Perhaps we too have experienced the boundless riches of Christ that are now apparent in our lives. We affirm that God’s provision is always more than, greater than, and beyond. All— Gentiles and Jews alike—share in the extravagant, endless inheritance of the saints.
Gracious God, may we ever search the boundless riches of Christ. Amen.
Isaiah 60:1-6 recalls the coming of God into the world as a brilliant light. That light carries with it the power to transform Israel so that those outside Israel are drawn to her light. Ephesians 3:1-12 points out God’s mysterious inclusion of the Gentiles among God’s people. The gift of light carries with it the obligation to accept and proclaim the inclusion of all out- siders. The psalm and Gospel passages draw on imagery of the king and his enthronement. For the psalmist, the king’s power and longevity must serve the purpose of the people’s good. The magi in Matthew are drawn by the light that marks the infant king’s birth and thus begin the process of outsiders who see in the gospel the mystery of salvation.
• Read Psalm 72:1-7; 10-14. How should we pray for our world’s leaders? What is our responsibility in working for justice and righteousness in our world today?
• Read Isaiah 60:1-6. Where have you seen evidence of God’s presence? How has God used you as a light to dispel dark- ness?
• Read Matthew 2:1-12. How do you respond when people ask you spiritual questions? In what ways have you sought the Lord and been sensitive to God’s guidance?
• Read Ephesians 3:1-12. How has God blessed you beyond your perceived boundaries?
Respond by posting a prayer.