Learning from each other
So Peter invited (Cornelius' men) in and gave them lodging.
The next day he got up and went with them, and some of the believers from Joppa accompanied him. The following day they came to Caesarea. Cornelius was expecting them and had called together his relatives and close friends. On Peter’s arrival Cornelius met him, and falling at his feet, worshiped him. But Peter made him get up, saying, “Stand up; I am only a mortal.” And as he talked with him, he went in and found that many had assembled; and he said to them, “You yourselves know that it is unlawful for a Jew to associate with or to visit a Gentile; but God has shown me that I should not call anyone profane or unclean. So when I was sent for, I came without objection. Now may I ask why you sent for me?”
Cornelius replied, “Four days ago at this very hour, at three o’clock, I was praying in my house when suddenly a man in dazzling clothes stood before me. He said, ‘Cornelius, your prayer has been heard and your alms have been remembered before God. Send therefore to Joppa and ask for Simon, who is called Peter; he is staying in the home of Simon, a tanner, by the sea.’ Therefore I sent for you immediately, and you have been kind enough to come. So now all of us are here in the presence of God to listen to all that the Lord has commanded you to say.”
Then Peter began to speak to them: “I truly understand that God shows no partiality. ~ Acts 10:23-34
Even the greatest among us has something to learn.
Cornelius would have been considered great among his tribe. A leader, a centurion. Not a man to be trifled with.
Peter was great among Jesus' followers. A leader as well.
Two men, two very different backgrounds.
Two men, two very different religions.
Two men from very different parts the world.
Brought together by one God.
By one Spirit.
Teaching each other.
Learning from each other.
Expanding their views of the world with each other.
In our communities, we also come together from different backgrounds. Sometimes from different beliefs. Sometimes from very different tribes.
And we can choose to learn from each other.
Or we can choose to stay where we are in our beliefs and our practices.
Which way are we being called to?
Lord let your Spirit teach me and open my heart and mind to ideas and views that will bring me closer to you and to your people. Amen.