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  • Patty Breen

One Not Many


One of my favorite sayings is “words matter.” The words we say - to other people, ourselves, and yes, even God - they really do matter.


Here in this community, today we begin a new series focusing on each phrase in the Apostle’s Creed. These words are some of the earliest statements that defined and explained what Christianity believed and taught.


Over the course of history, many women and men have given their lives for these words and what they mean - even still to this day. As we begin reflecting more deeply on these sacred words, let’s remember and remind ourselves - words matter.

 

In my former life as a new youth minister, I was always looking for ways to explore the faith with teenagers in age-appropriate yet engaging ways. During one particular year, the current youth leadership team decided that they wanted to do a monthly series on breaking open the Apostle’s Creed.


They came up with lots of interesting, creative ideas - some more “unique” than others. Specifically, I am thinking about the time a group of teens re-wrote the Creed to the lyrics of the song “Shape of You” by Ed Sheeran. That was by far our most interesting end result.


The first words in the Creed given to us from the Apostle’s is simple yet powerful: “I believe in one God.”


One God.

Not multiple gods like many of the different cultures surrounding the early Christians.

Not a hierarchy of gods.

Not gods for specific things or purposes.


But, one God.


Friends, it is critically important that we lay our foundation upon these words.


Why?


Because it is this one God, one whole and united person, that chose to enter into the full experience of humanity.


It is this one God who took on human flesh so that we might never feel alone, lost, or abandoned.


What does it matter that we believe God is one?

As I sit with this truth, I am drawn to think about what the word one means.


Whole. United. Complete. Total.


What if God was one because he/she wanted us to know, feel, and experience each of those words in our relationship with him/her?


What if that’s a sliver of the reason we believe God is one?


I don’t know about you, but that feels safe and comforting to me.


I am never alone, lost, forgotten, or abandoned - because God is one.


 

When not working in healthcare or writing, you can find Patty getting stronger at CrossFit, reading good books, and loving on her godchildren, niece, and nephew. She loves deep conversations at the intersection of faith, culture and ministry and using the art of storytelling to connect to people's hearts. Follow her Instagram here.

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