“When they heard of the resurrection of the dead, some scoffed; but others said, ‘We will hear you again about this.’”
There are certain things that are so incredible that even those who desire to believe need to hear it again—perhaps need to hear it again and again. This “we will hear you again about this” attitude, this willingness to entertain even the most outlandish suggestions because they stir a certain hope of truth inside of us, is what the Christian practice of weekly gathering and weekly storytelling is all about.
Every week we hear an incredible truth: that Jesus did die and rise again, that life to the full and without end is freely given, that God's love for this world is better even than the love that the world desires for itself, or that we are a people of truth and justice.
But then we return to the world of dead-meaning-dead, of conditional love where nothing (not even lunch) is free, and the doubts creep in - the questions about who we are and who God is manifest themselves once more. This is natural. This is not to be ashamed of—and it is in courage that we say repeatedly “we will hear again about this.” Despite the scoffers in our midst and the world that is so sure we’re fools for considering anything but its ways to be true or right: we choose to hear stories of truth again, to consider them in fresh ways each week. We choose to come, even with doubts and questions, because there's something beautiful that draws us to this incredible truth.
These Athenians who said “we will hear you again about this” were not uniquely incredulous or critical. They were a model for us of simple faith lived out, models of a genuine response to the unfathomable nature of God’s good truth—the truths of stories we never dared believe before. Stories that give us reason for hope and longing for the future.
This week, you are invited to come and hear again. Hear again about the kingdom of God that is being made real here, wherever you’re reading this, and everywhere where God’s people are. Hear again about how our church is following Jesus (even when you feel like you lost Jesus a long time ago), how we are loving the city (even though you are dismayed at the violence in our streets), and how we are serving the world (even if you feel overwhelmed at the thought of it.) Hear again these good truths for your soul.
Whether it’ll be for the first time in a long time, or one of countless times remembering together. Come and hear. Come and see. Come and believe.
I can’t wait to hear about God’s goodness again with you tomorrow.
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