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The Forward Day by Day Meditation for April 25, 2022

We post a Forward Day by Day Meditation for every day of the year - and we invite you to consider them and talk about them here. If you'd like to comment, you can log in to Disqus with your Facebook, Twitter, or Google account; just click "Login," or the appropriate logo below. Or, you can sign up for a Disqus account; just use the entry form below, or click the "D" logo to start the process. You can find the past week's Meditations in the box at right (or below, for mobile users), or search for previous entries on the Archives page. You can also listen to the Forward Day by Day podcast anywhere you find podcasts!

MONDAY, April 25         Saint Mark, Evangelist and Apostle

Ephesians 4:11-12 The gifts he gave were that some would be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, some pastors and teachers, to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ.

Each one of us is needed to build up the body of Christ. Too often, people in the pews—lay people like me—forget this. We give up our claim to be agents of God. We relinquish our power to build up the body of Christ.

In the several years I have served as a youth minister at Episcopal churches, I have noticed how much authority I and other lay people invest in our clergy. At its worst, we give ordained people more responsibility than they can bear. In other cases, and almost as unhelpful, we give them more credit than they deserve. We provide them with credit that belongs to God and God alone. It is not their personal power or their particular piety that accomplishes the work of God in our communities and our world. It is God. And yet, we sometimes forget that God works through all of us, clergy and lay people, equally in effort and equally in impact even as it uniquely manifests in each of us.

MOVING FORWARD: Do you view the ministry of clergy and laity as equal but expressed in different ways? Or do you tend to elevate one over the other? Reflect on this dynamic.

PRAY for the Diocese of Lagos Mainland (Nigeria)

Ps 2 or 2:7-10 | Isaiah 52:7-10 | Ephesians 4:7-8,11-16 | Mark 1:1-15 or Mark 16:15-20

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