Act Like Gifted and Beloved People, Because That Is What You Are

The scripture passage from Romans this week has a lot of special meaning to me and Tiffany. This particular passage was the basis for our college Chaplain’s benediction. Sure, it was Paul’s benediction first, but John Williams took Paul to a whole new level. Of course, his interpretation is not the standard one, but for my money, it is loaded with a whole lot more relevance and meaning. And of course, for me, it isn’t complete with adding on those words at the end, “And act like gifted and beloved children of God, because that is what you are.”—Imagine that being said with a thick Texan drawl and you’ll get the idea.

What is interesting is that this passage is a benediction (from Latin for Good Words). It is a beautiful passage, but as you start to look a little bit closer at what it is asking us to do as faithful disciples, it may seem like Paul is asking a bit much of us. These tasks are no easy feat for any of us, and yet, this is how a disciple of Christ acts and lives in the world. It’s a tall order, but it is also an essential one.

I think back to the same advice that college chaplain gave me as I was working on my first sermon, “There better be good news there, or its not preaching the gospel—it’s something else not worth anybody’s time.”

So how does this tall order become good news for us?

I think it starts with realizing just what our lives begin to look like when we start living by these “good words,” and indeed, what the whole world starts to look like when it becomes rampant. For the rest, you’ll have to come Sunday or check the podcast of the sermon next week.

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