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An Invitation to Grace
October 1, 2023, 12:00 PM

It is so easy and so tempting to build ourselves up at the expense of others. “I can’t imagine ever doing that.” “How can people live like that?” “Who would do such a thing?” At some point we all think or say these sorts of things. Like it or not, we use these words to comfort ourselves at the expense of others. These words are a reminder that all people stand in need of God’s grace.

Each of this day’s readings shows us this reality. In the parable of the two sons, Jesus invites us to choose between two sons when neither fully does the will of their father. Here Jesus makes the point that we are all equally in need of God’s grace. Ezekiel proclaims God’s invitation, “Turn, then, and live” (Ezek. 18:32). This is an invitation that extends to all people, from a God deeply desiring a loving and life-giving relationship with humanity.

In Philippians, we are reminded of Jesus’ act of grace on the cross, emptying himself, becoming sin so that all creation might be redeemed through him. In response, we discover a vision of the day in which all creation speaks with a unified voice, declaring Jesus Christ is Lord.

This is a day of confession and forgiveness. We confess our need for God, our distance from God, and our failures before God. In response, to our joy, we discover again the grace of God outpoured. All humans are in need of God’s grace; God extends grace to all, and one day we will confess that salvation as one people. All of today’s readings reveal the way in which all humans are equal in the eyes of God.