What is the only basis for any confidence we have? Why would we presume to say that we are a church with a living, daring confidence in God’s grace through the gospel of Jesus Christ? The last part is significant: through the gospel of Jesus Christ, we are emboldened to stand confidently. There is no part of you or I in this economy; it is not in self-confidence that we stand, but in Christ-confidence. It really is not about us. We have been crucified with Christ, so it is no longer about you or me, but about Christ alone, who loved me and gave himself for me. What is the one thing we know, and which we can proclaim to others: Christ Jesus, and that he died for us so that we may live. This is the same old story that the world needs to hear; by the Lord’s grace, it is the story we will carry out as emissaries, ambassadors, and messengers.
And I, when I came to you, brothers, did not come proclaiming to you the testimony of God with lofty speech or wisdom. For I decided to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ and him crucified. (I Corinthians 2:1-2)
Almighty God: we have no power of ourselves to help ourselves. Keep us both outwardly in our bodies and inwardly in our souls; that we may be defended from all adversities which may happen to the body, and from all evil thoughts which may assault and hurt the soul; through Jesus Christ. Amen.