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Sunday, September 22, 2013

Today’s Reading | Colossians 2:6–15

As you therefore have received Christ Jesus the Lord, continue to live your lives in him, rooted and built up in him and established in the faith, just as you were taught, abounding in thanksgiving.

See to it that no one takes you captive through philosophy and empty deceit, according to human tradition, according to the elemental spirits of the universe, and not according to Christ. For in him the whole fullness of deity dwells bodily, and you have come to fullness in him, who is the head of every ruler and authority. In him also you were circumcised with a spiritual circumcision, by putting off the body of the flesh in the circumcision of Christ; when you were buried with him in baptism, you were also raised with him through faith in the power of God, who raised him from the dead. And when you were dead in trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made you alive together with him, when he forgave us all our trespasses, erasing the record that stood against us with its legal demands. He set this aside, nailing it to the cross. He disarmed the rulers and authorities and made a public example of them, triumphing over them in it. (NRSV)


A friend of mine is perpetually seeking spiritual guidance from whatever pop culture offers. At one point she called to say she was all set: she had The Secret, a sure path to peace and happiness. Despite the clear limitations of her discovery in my opinion, she was excited and relieved. And then some time later she expressed defeat once again: The Secret had not worked. She followed the guidelines and tracked her progress, but she didn’t get the result toward which she had so carefully been building.

For me, this is an example of what Paul refers to when he says, “See to it that no one makes a prey of you by philosophy and empty deceit.” Instead, Paul describes a faith rooted in Jesus Christ to “come to fullness of life in him,” triumphing over the principalities and powers that eventually let us down.


Gracious Lord, in whom I find true strength, thank you for the peace and reassurance you provide as I participate in the events of this day. Guide me as I try to reflect your love in my encounters with those who are courageously struggling with questions and finding empty answers. Amen.

Written by Barbara Cleveland, Executive Assistant

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