God works through some unlikely people:
Abraham: an elderly, childless man, yet he is called to be the father of nations.
Rahab: a Gentile prostitute, yet by sheltering the Israelite spies she ensures their victory at Jericho.
David: a youngest son, just a shepherd, yet he becomes Israel’s greatest king.
Jonah: the very reluctant prophet, yet his one-sentence sermon leads all of Nineveh to repent.
When Jesus was born, the first people to proclaim the birth of the Messiah were lowly shepherds, men living on the edges of society. The first dignitaries to pay homage to the king were a group of Gentile mystics. Jesus didn’t call biblical scholars or spiritual experts to follow him. He called fishermen and tax collectors, the Samaritan woman and Roman Centurion, and those set free from blindness and leprosy.
And finally, on that first Easter morning, the dawn of the new creation, who were the first human messengers to proclaim the resurrection? Women. Who didn’t even get counted when Jesus fed 5,000, who wouldn’t be allowed to testify in court, and whose report about the empty tomb was dismissed by some as an “idle tale” (Luke 24:11). Nevertheless, these unlikely messengers carried the good news about Jesus’ resurrection to the eleven and “all the rest.”
God continues to work through unlikely people. People like us. The only “qualification” required is one that we received on the day of our baptism. “You have been sealed by the Holy Spirit and marked with the cross of Christ forever. . . .Let your light so shine before others that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father in heaven.” (Evangelical Lutheran Worship, page 231).
Looking at God’s unlikely messengers in scripture, we discover that many of them hesitated. Many of them struggled with doubts and questions. They often felt underqualified or unworthy. In spite of all of this, God worked through them. I believe that God can and does work through us today, even when we might also hesitate or wrestle with doubts.
At Zion, we are joined together on a mission to make Jesus known to all in our words and actions. Unlikely as it may seem, God is working through you to accomplish this.
One of the most straight-forward ways to make Jesus known in our community is to simply invite a friend to church. Easter is a perfect time for this.
As you make your Easter plans this year, won’t you consider inviting someone to join you? Think of neighbors who may have drifted away from regular worship. Think of friends who’ve never been involved in a church, but who seem to be searching for a deeper spiritual life.
Then, invite them to worship with you. Be sure to offer them a ride, so they don’t arrive alone! Introduce them to others at the Easter Breakfast.
May you be the messenger who carries the good news, this Easter: The tomb is empty. Jesus is risen!!
Grace and peace,