The appointed Epistle reading for the Daily Prayer of the Church is taken from Paul’s first letter to the Church in Corinth:
Now concerning spiritual gifts, brothers and sisters, I do not want you to be uninformed. You know that when you were pagans, you were enticed and led astray to idols that could not speak. Therefore I want you to understand that no one speaking by the Spirit of God ever says ‘Let Jesus be cursed!’ and no one can say ‘Jesus is Lord’ except by the Holy Spirit.
Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; and there are varieties of services, but the same Lord; and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who activates all of them in everyone. To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good. To one is given through the Spirit the utterance of wisdom, and to another the utterance of knowledge according to the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by the one Spirit, to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another the discernment of spirits, to another various kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues. All these are activated by one and the same Spirit, who allots to each one individually just as the Spirit chooses. (1 Cor. 12:1-11).
There are so many in our society who think that equality is making everyone the same. That is not equality; rather, that is homogenization, uniformity, amalgamation, destruction of uniqueness. We have a lot of that going around these days. People who shout down the other person because they have a difference of opinion. The mantra is, “If you don’t think the way I do, then you and you are either stupid or bigoted. You must conform to my way of thinking, to my way of being.” Equality then consists of being interchangeable like a cog in a machine.
Today’s Epistle reading from St. Paul tells us that in our different personalities and gifts we find equality. We are equal because each of us is indispensible; we are all equally needed. Within the same Lord, some heal, some prophecy, some teach, some discern, some do miracles, but each is different, and each is equal because each is indispensible to the Body of Christ. If everyone was a prophet, or a teacher, or a miracle worker, or a healer, or able to discern, or if everyone was a bishop, or a priest, or a deacon, or a layperson, or an atheist, or a theologian, pick your sameness, it simply would not work.
Let us pray: Open our eyes and ears, O Lord, to see that in our uniqueness we are equal because we are all indispensible. Amen.
The funeral service for Ernest Lemons, Jr. will be Saturday, 17 October at 11 AM, at E.L. Johnson Funeral Home in Galveston.
The Art Show is going on this week in Sutton Hall. Please come and see the wonderful art work, each as unique as its creator.
Adult Christian Education: Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis at 11 AM on Sundays.
All Hallows’ Eve children’s party on Friday, 30 October in Sutton Hall from 6 PM to 9 PM.
Please remember everyone on our Prayer List.
Your servant in Christ,
Fr. Chester J. Makowski+
St. Augustine of Hippo Episcopal Church
Galveston, Texas 77550