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Have you ever been anointed with oil? What smell do you associate with that experience? Do you remember the feel of it? In my experience, which has always been in mainline Protestant settings, those doing the anointing tend to be fairly stingy with the oil. Their hands barely skim the...
Abundant God, pour out your unity and peace like oil upon my head. Open my every sense to your blessing, so that I may bless others, unafraid of scarcity and trusting in abundance. Amen.
Easter promises us the possibility of new life in Christ, but what should that life look like? Scripture makes clear that one sign of union with God is unity with each other. How wonderful it is, the psalmist says, when there is peace among brothers and sisters. Unity and peace do not mean simply the lack of conflict but proactive care for one another. The Christians in Acts lived out this care in a practical way by giving of their material means to help one another. John in his epistle tells us that this fellowship with one another is ultimately modeled on the fellowship we share with God and Christ, while in his Gospel, John teaches that belief in Jesus the Messiah is what binds us all together in this new life.
• Read Acts 4:32-35. In what ways have you experienced the generosity of community?
• Read Psalm 133. How and where do you experience the wild, extravagant love of God?
• Read 1 John 1:1–2:2. How do you keep ever before you the urgency and joy of Easter?
• Read John 20:19-31. What fears keep you locked away from the world?
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