A Daily Dose of Good News
Friday, April 17, 2020
Pastor Steve’s devotion is offered live at https://youtu.be/mW48WyFFph4
For a printable PDF version, click here: DDGN 20200417
Now I would remind you, brothers and sisters, of the good news that I proclaimed to you, which you in turn received, in which also you stand, through which also you are being saved, if you hold firmly to the message that I proclaimed to you—unless you have come to believe in vain. For I handed on to you as of first importance what I in turn had received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the scriptures, and that he was buried, and that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the scriptures, and that he appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve. Then he appeared to more than five hundred brothers and sisters at one time, most of whom are still alive, though some have died. Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles. Last of all, as to one untimely born, he appeared also to me. For I am the least of the apostles, unfit to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God. But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace toward me has not been in vain. On the contrary, I worked harder than any of them—though it was not I, but the grace of God that is with me. Whether then it was I or they, so we proclaim and so you have come to believe. (1 Corinthians 15:1-11)
Going with a little playful analogy on a Friday …
Near every time I hear this passage
It almost always brings to mind for me
And old childhood cartoon character Popeye,
Whose catch phrase confession for all his actions
Echoes that of Paul’s confession above:
I am what I am!
If you’re too young to remember the character
Or even if you want to take a trip down memory lane
Do yourself a favor and Google: P-O-P-E-Y-E
And lose yourself in several episodes of Popeye’s heroics
Often delivering from danger his damsel in distress, Olive Oil
Summarizing the source of his super human strength
With his catchy theme song:
I’m Popeye the sailor man.
I’m Popeye the sailor man
I’m strong to the finich
‘Cuz I eats me spinach.
I’m Popeye the sailor man!
To be sure, often finding himself in prisons
Paul doesn’t have the power
To deliver himself or others from harm’s way
As Popeye did one episode to the next …
Paul’s is the power of faith
Granted by God and God’s alone
To stand as a witness to God’s promise
To stand with and see us through all trials in our lives …
A witness that God has already
Triumphed over the trials that we suffer.
By the grace of God, Paul encourages that faith in others
And if your courage to triumph over suffering
Is anything like my courage to triumph over suffering
It’s only going to happen
By the power of God and God’s grace in my life
Just as Paul attested as well.
May God and God’s grace be strong in your faith and mine
During these days of disruption and suffering
Building you up in courage
And emboldening you to witness Christ and his resurrection for others
By the grace in God reflected in your own words and deeds
In these trying days.