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Acts 17:19-21 So they took [Paul] and brought him to the Areopagus and asked him, “May we know what this new teaching is that you are presenting? It sounds rather strange to us, so we would like to know what it means.” Now all the Athenians and the foreigners living there would spend their time in nothing but telling or hearing something new.
Like the ancient Athenians, New Yorkers are always looking for something new. On a recent spring day, a woman handed out samples for a new type of moisturizer with tiny bits of 24-karat gold. Of course I took one.
Back at home, I couldn’t see any gold in the lotion, nor could I imagine how gold might help soothe dry skin. But I rubbed some on my hands nonetheless, hoping—for what exactly?
Contrast this with Paul’s message in the Athenian marketplace. His message is about a life focused around serving God and others, a life of simplicity and sacrifice. It is more transformative than any new moisturizer, but it’s also harder to apply. It’s neither new nor luxurious, and it doesn’t come with any gold.
MOVING FORWARD: What is the value of Paul’s message to you? How might you apply this message to your life?
Good Book Club Reading: Acts 17:10-34
Today the Church remembers Dame Julian of Norwich, c. 1417.