We love to make faith about who is “in” and who is “out”. We love to believe that we know how God works, and that we can easily discern when something is “of God” or not. We like to feel that we are in God’s inner circle, and that we are beloved by God while others are not. We may say out loud that we know that God loves everyone, but in our hearts we easily start to feel like we, and those in our group, are God’s favourites.

But this week, the Lectionary challenges these exclusive views of God’s work. Just when it looks like we have God all worked out, God does something completely unexpected. If we don’t keep our hearts and minds open to this surprising work of God, we may just find ourselves missing out on what God is doing. In the Old Testament, the story of Esther reveals how God can use serendipitous events and unexpected people to save those who are being oppressed and persecuted. In the Gospels, the disciples tell Jesus that they found someone casting out demons in his name, and they told him to stop. But Jesus tells them not to stop him because “anyone who is not against us is for us.” Certainly God seems to be less worried about credentials and the right connections than we are!

This week, why not try to open yourself a little more to the surprising work of God in your life and your world?

To download this week’s reflections in PDF format, click here.