Acts 1:6 – “Lord, will you at this time restore the Kingdom to Israel?” That was the question, from the disciples, to Jesus, just before he ascended. The disciples couldn’t see that Jesus’ resurrection wasn’t just for Israel; it extended to “the ends of the earth” (verse 8). We forget that the first Christians were all Jews, and some Samaritans, in Acts, chapter 8, that Philip preached to, because persecution was happening in Jerusalem, and Philip had to get out of town. It’s not, until Acts, chapter 10, that the first non-Jew, a Gentile, becomes a Christian: Cornelius, a Roman soldier. (Even that wouldn’t have happened unless an angel appeared to both Cornelius and Peter.) Peter baptizes Cornelius and his household because the Holy Spirit came upon them. When Peter is confronted, in chapter 11, for baptizing Gentiles by believers in Jerusalem, in effect he answers, “What was I supposed to do? The Holy Spirit came upon us.” – Verses 16, 17.

It took the work of the Holy Spirit for the first Christians to see the full implications of Jesus’ crucifixion and resurrection. Simply put, they couldn’t “think outside the box.” Jesus’ crucifixion and resurrection began a “new normal.” Are we any different than those first Christians? In the midst of this unprecedented pandemic, and protests, the question for us is, “What is God doing in all of this?” Can we “think outside of the box”? I submit the following poem to help us “think outside of the box”, to answer the question, “What is God doing in all of this?” Remember, “We walk by faith, not by sight.”

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