At the weekend my wife and I and my parents and brother went up to visit the Derbyshire village of Eyam. Eyam is famous for quarantining itself when the inhabitants were infected with the plague in 1665-1666. They set up two boundary markers beyond which they would not go, and no one would enter. People left food for them at these markers so that they could survive.

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As I stood just beyond the marker (see above) and looked out over the valley I was struck again by how great God’s creation is. But then I was also struck with how great God’s wisdom is as well as I realised it wasn’t to be found ultimately in what I saw in front of me…

At a weekend away for a church recently I asked the people there to break into groups and discuss what they would do if they had to make a display of God’s greatness; how would they do it? The majority answered in the way most of us would – we’d want to make some display of God’s creation, perhaps a window on to a great landscape. Look at the universe and see how great God is.

But Ephesians 3:10 tells us that God chose to make his wisdom known to the powers and authorities, not by showing them his creation, or through great displays of his strength like destroying armies or toppling dictators.

God chose to make his wisdom known through his church – that group of rebellious, broken people that he has rescued and made into his own people (Ephesians 2). Not very impressive by our world’s standards. Maybe even to some not very exciting.

But that is God’s wisdom. It is in his church that God shows everyone that his plan to bring everything under Christ will be completed, because the church is a group of people living under the kingship of Christ. The church is where God shows his strength and ability to fulfil his purposes. The church is God’s plan for the cosmos in microcosm.

I love the way God’s wisdom flies in the face of our wisdom. I love it that God chooses to do things in the opposite way to us! It really is God’s wisdom to use what is weak in our eyes to show his strength.

So when you’re just getting on with your (plural) daily lives as God’s people, loving each other, forgiving each other, living gospel-centred lives together, remember that you are God’s chosen means of displaying his wisdom to the universe.

I think that is very exciting indeed.

(for more on this subject see ‘Identity – it’s all about God’s people’ in Ephesians)

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