Year of Scripture – Galatians

Today’s Readings:
Day 341 – Saturday, December 7: Galatians 1 – 3
Day 342 – Sunday, December 8: Galatians 4 – 6

When you think of St. Paul and the letters he sent out into the world, we are usually quick to remember his letters Corinth, the letter to the Ephesians, or his writings to the Thessalonians. For what ever reason, Galatians, Colossians, and the Pastoral Letters (I’ll explain that in a few weeks) don’t seem to stick in our minds. Regardless of why, each still has something unique to offer to us as people of God.

For Galatians . . . the gift that Paul gives us comes in Chapter 5. You’ve probably heard these words before:

By contrast, the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against such things.
(Galatians 5:22-23)

The “by contrast” is important, for just a few verses before Paul reflects on the “works of the flesh.” Let’s be honest here, there isn’t a lot of kindness in the images he presents. Let’s be even more honest here, the works of the flesh continue to work their ways into our wold today. Always have, always will.

Yet with Christ, there is a better way! For God’s way that reminds us that we are all called to share the gift of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, and self control. I am reminded of Tina Turner’s 1993 hit song, “what’s love got to do with it.” Well absolutely everything. We could turn back to I Corinthians and see how love shapes us to be a people of God. Here, in Paul’s words to the Galatians, we are reminded that love us just one of the Fruits of the Spirit. However it is love first, which brings to life the ability to share joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, and self control. What a gift! What a challenge to give and receive these gifts.

Take a look around as you are out shopping (assuming you still go out to shop and aren’t just pointing to click). Take a look around and see if the “Works of the Flesh” are at hand, or if the “Gifts of the Spirit” are physically present. Chances are you might see a bit of both! Then filled with the Holy Spirit, work for the greater good in how you interact with those around you.

Pastor Bailey

Upcoming Readings:
Day 343 – Monday, December 9: Ephesians 1 – 3
Day 344 – Tuesday, December 10: Ephesians 4 – 6
Day 345 – Wednesday, December 11: Philippians
Day 346 – Thursday, December 12: Colossians
Day 347 – Friday December 13: I Thessalonians
Day 348 – Saturday, December 14: II Thessalonians
Day 349 – Sunday, December 15: I Timothy
Day 350 – Monday, December 16: II Timothy
Day 351 – Tuesday, December 17: Titus & Philemon
Day 352 – Wednesday, December 18: Hebrews 1 – 6

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