They are gossips, slanderers, God-haters, insolent, arrogant and boastful; they invent ways of doing evil.
— Romans 1:29-31
Ever since sin came into our world, we human beings have been thinking up new ways to do bad things or to do things badly. And if we think we are immune from this, we are only deceiving ourselves.
Creativity is part of the image of God given to human beings, and, sadly, we have put our creativity to use to destroy as much of the rest of God’s image in us as possible. That’s what our passage today in Romans warns about.
God has always been there for us to find, but until the Lord came into our lives, we refused to find him. We didn’t want to. Our sinful nature turned us away from God. We wanted to pursue bad things, or if we wanted to pursue anything good, we wanted to do it our way.
In the opening chapter of Romans, Paul is clearly angry about all the evil that people have done in the world, and then in chapter 2 he turns a corner. Every person has had some part in this creative sinfulness we’ve brought into the world, and if any of us thinks we can judge another, we are condemning ourselves.
Even so, God has been kind and merciful to forgive us and show us a better way. And since God has been kind to us, we can and must spread that kindness to everyone else as well.
Dear Jesus, remind us that your way is better than our old way. Show us all your kindness, forbearance, and patience, we pray. Amen.