Galatians 4:22-24, 26-27, 31-5:1
I love the number 4. I love 13, 22, 31 and 40. I even love 94 because 9+4=13 and 1+3=4. I drive my family insane pointing out the numerology of 01:03 or 02:02 or 4:00 pm. I like to turn my light off at 22:22.
Looking for signs (or numbers) in our environment or experience is perhaps a natural part of being human. Some of us give these signs more credence. Is it miraculous or simply a coincidence when an old friend makes contact mere moments after we have thought of them? If the natural world intervenes or a person enters our life and initiates change while we search for an answer to a prayer, might not this be direct communication from God?
In Luke’s text, the crowds were searching for signs and Jesus called them a wicked generation. The advent of technology, at once a convenience and a hindrance, has brought the modern world closer into what is affectionately called a global village. Yet, the proximity of our lives has resulted in humans becoming insular—we no longer look for signs in the heavens and on earth. Instead, we believe we have all the answers at our fingertips—thank you Ms Google.
I wonder whether Jesus might also look upon this generation as wicked, but for differing reasons. We may do well to look up from our screens and listen to the sound of God’s voice heard in the waves, the winds, the wildlife and the wellspring of life.
Angela Marquis works as a chaplain in a Tasmanian local primary school and with the Passionists at St Joseph’s Hobart Parish. She completed a Master of Theology in 2021 and is currently studying Biblical Hebrew with the Israel Institute. She enjoys rock climbing and long leisurely beach walks with her husband and four-legged daughter.