Digging in Deeper: Ephesians 2:8-9

“For you are saved by grace through faith, and this is not from yourselves; it is God’s gift – not from works, so that no one can boast.” (CSB – Read the chapter)

Okay, I know I’ve talked about it several times – more than any other series I’ve reviewed since I’ve been doing this – but I just can’t help it. It was so good, and now it’s over. Rarely has a show received the amount of cultural acclaim that Ted Lasso has achieved. People are begging its creator, Jason Sudeikis, to bring it back for another story arc. And they are doing this not simply because it was so very good, but because of the good it introduced to the culture over its three-season run. And yet this past Wednesday, the series officially came to an end. And as much as it pains me to say this, I hope that ending remains. Let’s talk one more time about why the show was so good, and why it could have been even better.

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Digging in Deeper: Exodus 4:10-12

“But Moses replied to the Lord, ‘Please, Lord, I have never been eloquent – either in the past or recently or since you have been speaking to your servant – because my mouth and my tongue are sluggish.’ The Lord said to him, ‘Who placed a mouth on humans? Who makes a person mute or deaf, seeing or blind? Is it not I, the Lord? Now go! I will help you speak and I will teach you what to say.'” (CSB – Read the chapter)

I hate excuses. Hearing someone else refuse to take responsibility for something they have said or done, but instead offer up a list of reasons why it is everybody else’s fault makes me want to drive my head through a wall (or better yet, their head). I hate excuses. Unless, of course, I am the one making them. Then they aren’t excuses at all. They’re explanations for why things turned out the way they did that are entirely reasonable. When God answered Moses’ hopefully disqualifying question of what would make the people believe he really came from God so convincingly, he switched from objections to excuses. Let’s take a look at what he said and how God responded.

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Digging in Deeper: Ecclesiastes 4:7-8

“Again, I saw futility under the sun: There is a person without a companion, without even a son or brother, and though there is no end to all his struggles, his eyes are still not content with riches. ‘Who am I struggling for,’ he asks, ‘and depriving myself of good things?’ This too is futile and a miserable task.” (CSB – Read the chapter)

We are suffering a crisis of loneliness. At least, that’s the opinion of our government. In a recent announcement from no less an authority than the U.S. Surgeon General, our government announced that its official position is that we are suffering from a “loneliness epidemic.” And this isn’t just a holdover from Covid either. We are lonely and that is and will continue causing more and more problems in our society. If left unchecked, this could get even worse. We could accidentally unleash a super villain who tries to destroy the world. Okay, admittedly, that seems unlikely, but it happened in the final season of the now-cancelled DC Comics HBO series, Titans. Let’s talk about the final season, what worked, what didn’t, and why it made a point worth considering.

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Digging in Deeper: Exodus 3:13-15

“Then Moses asked God, ‘If I go to the Israelites and say to them, “The God of your ancestors has sent me to you,” and they ask me, “What is his name?” what should I tell them?’ God replied to Moses, ‘I AM WHO I AM. This is what you are to say to the Israelites: I AM has sent me to you.’ God also said to Moses, ‘Say this to the Israelites: The Lord, the God of your ancestors, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, has sent me to you. This is my name forever; this is how I am to be remembered in every generation.'” (CSB – Read the chapter)

This is one of those foundational passages in the Scriptures that serves as the rock on which a great deal of the rest of the ideas they contain rests. Moses asks who it is he should tell the people of Israel has sent him to lead them. In response, God reveals His name to Moses. While this was perhaps the first time Moses had heard it, that may not have been the case for the Israelites. Let’s talk about what’s going on here and what this means for us.

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Digging in Deeper: Exodus 3:11-12

“But Moses asked God, ‘Who am I that I should go to Pharaoh and that I should bring the Israelites out of Egypt?’ He answered, ‘I will certainly be with you, and this will be the sign to you that I am the one who sent you: when you bring the people out of Egypt, you will all worship God at this mountain.'” (CSB – Read the chapter)

Have you ever felt unworthy of the situation you are in? Every now and then I’ll have one of those out-of-body moments when everything is going really well, and I’ll suddenly be struck by the feeling that I’m really just an actor playing a part written by somebody else to make a really compelling story. Who am I that I should be experiencing all of these good things? Who am I that I should get to have this position or to enjoy these blessings? When God told Moses what He wanted him to do, this is how he responded to it as well. Let’s talk about what’s going on here.

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