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The Divine Author: God's Story for Your Life

I have said these things to you while I am still with you. But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you everything and remind you of all that I have said to you. Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled, and do not let them be afraid. - John 14:25-27 NRSV

Paul Harvey had a radio show from 1976 to 2009 where he shared interesting facts about famous people, famously signing off with, "And now you know the rest of the story." The great delight of his storytelling was in learning something new about these amazing people whom we thought we knew so well. For instance, while it's common knowledge that Milton Hershey is one of the world's most successful chocolatiers, Paul Harvey tells us that Hershey found success after failing to manufacture and sell caramels in Philadelphia, Chicago, Denver, New Orleans, and New York. Financially broke and broken-hearted, with only a 4th-grade education, Hershey tried once more to create confections, this time in his hometown of Pennsylvania, and became one of the world's most successful entrepreneurs and philanthropists.

 

In this Eastertide narrative, we're going to delve into the stories of the disciples. While we may be familiar with the story of Thomas doubting Jesus, the rest of his narrative is one of adventure, courage, faith, perseverance, and self-sacrifice. Thanks to Thomas' missionary zeal, there exists an ancient church in India dating back to a few decades after the life of Christ.

 

There are countless stories like this—not only about the disciples but also about what God is currently doing in the world. Similarly, Scripture says, "all the things Jesus did cannot be contained in this book" (John 21:25). What we discover is that people and God's world are more fascinating, intriguing, and compelling than we could ever realize at first glance.

 

Though the Bible is a completed text, the ongoing story of what God is accomplishing is being narrated by faithful people today. The resurrected Christ continues to work in powerful and incredible ways beyond our comprehension. Uncovering these stories emboldens us to act on our convictions that God will work in and through us toward the Lord's vision of peace and light. What is the rest of the story of what Jesus is doing in our world, that it can't be contained in all the books in the world? The story is still being written...

 

Prayer of Confession

Lord, too often we see dead-ends and hopeless situations. We fail to believe in Your power to transform our lives and the world. So we hunker down to protect ourselves while neglecting the needs of our neighbor. But Your resurrection assures us that there is always more to the story and through Your disciples we see that hope continues through our lives. Embolden us to witness Your love with the courage of the disciples and give us the mettle to go forth as they did living Your love, seeking Your grace, and offering Your forgiveness, in Jesus' name.


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