In the continuing effort to get a handle on the coronavirus, some states have seen an uptick in cases so there is a concerted effort by many states to require the use of facial coverings or masks while in public (school, restaurant, amusement park, etc). This, of course, has proven to reduce the person-to-person spread of the coronavirus. So many states have mandated that if you come out in public you must wear a mask. And there are a variety of masks that have been created to help in this effort.
But here is the problem, some masks are more effective in reducing and stopping the spread of the virus. Yes, a recent study by Duke University revealed that some facial coverings are better equipped to keep the respiratory droplets that come out of our mouths when we speak from spreading. In other words, the odds of a person not spreading droplets are greater with some masks than others.
And just like all masks may not accomplish the same effects, and some masks may not be as effective as others so it is with life. Some people will just overcome whatever odds are against them, no matter what. Some people seem to rise above whatever tries to overtake them. So how do you become a person who defies the odds?
In our text today, we will find that Paul and his companions are moving out from Paphos and doing what God has destined for their lives. They are living out this mandate to bridge cultural divides between Jews and Gentiles while also reconciling humanity back to God. That's why I find it hard to separate social justice from spirituality. But here we find that in order to defy the odds one must stay focused, seize opportunities, and share responsibility.