A few years ago, I learned the power of the word and. I was preparing for a series called Gay & God, and I knew people would have so many reactions and emotions to the intersection of sexuality and Scripture. So we came up with this little tagline—Loving everyone God made and everything God wrote. I suspected the only way the series would work would be to include the and, to think deeply about real people and real passages, to care about grace and truth. As it turns out, that series became one of the most powerful in all my years of ministry.
And. That three-letter word is so powerful when you remember it. Think of the applications—Prayer is effective . . . and sometimes God says no to your most passionate pleas. Life is hard because of your past sins . . . and God still loves and forgives you. God is love . . . and God is holy. Faith is a personal connection with God . . . and it takes a community for that connection to be strong. A wife must respect her husband . . . and husbands love your wives. Do you see how much depends on and? And prevents sentences from ending too soon. And puts commas where the father of lies would love to put periods.
Meditate on one of the Bible’s best ands with me—“All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and all are justified freely by his grace” (Romans 3:23,24). What does each part of that sentence add to your faith? What other ands might our Father want to add to your thinking today?