Triune God, You created out of relationship and created us to be in relationship: with You, with others, and with all of creation. When we fail to care for creation, we fail to care for others, and we fail to care for you. When we insist on old ways because they are easier, and cause harm to the environment, we have failed to love our neighbors as ourselves. When we choose profits over the planet, we choose money, the false idol, over you. Call us back to your ways, to choose relationship with others and with creation. You created us in your image. You created the world and all of its creatures and declared it good. Triune God, Three-in-One, remind us of your love for us that is tied into the love and care of the earth. Amen.
Acts 26:24-32 Common English Bible (CEB)
At this point in Paul’s defense, Festus declared with a loud voice, “You’ve lost your mind, Paul! Too much learning is driving you mad!”
But Paul replied, “I’m not mad, most honorable Festus! I’m speaking what is sound and true. King Agrippa knows about these things, and I have been speaking openly to him. I’m certain that none of these things have escaped his attention. This didn’t happen secretly or in some out-of-the-way place. King Agrippa, do you believe the prophets? I know you do.”
Agrippa said to Paul, “Are you trying to convince me that, in such a short time, you’ve made me a Christian?”
Paul responded, “Whether it is a short or a long time, I pray to God that not only you but also all who are listening to me today will become like me, except for these chains.”
The king stood up, as did the governor, Bernice, and those sitting with them. As they left, they were saying to each other, “This man is doing nothing that deserves death or imprisonment.”
Agrippa said to Festus, “This man could have been released if he hadn’t appealed to Caesar.”