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Tag Archives: wonder

Saul Escapes from the Jews

After some time had passed, the Jews plotted to kill him, but their plot became known to Saul. They were watching the gates day and night so that they might kill him; but his disciples took him by night and let him down through an opening in the wall, lowering him in a basket. When he had come to Jerusalem, he attempted to join the disciples; and they were all afraid of him, for they did not believe that he was a disciple. But Barnabas took him, brought him to the apostles, and described for them how on the road he had seen the Lord, who had spoken to him, and how in Damascus he had spoken boldly in the name of Jesus. So he went in and out among them in Jerusalem, speaking boldly in the name of the Lord. He spoke and argued with the Hellenists; but they were attempting to kill him. When the believers learned of it, they brought him down to Caesarea and sent him off to Tarsus. Meanwhile the church throughout Judea, Galilee, and Samaria had peace and was built up. Living in the fear of the Lord and in the comfort of the Holy Spirit, it increased in numbers. (Acts 9:23-31, NRSV)

Saul just went from being the man every follower of Jesus despised and stayed away from, to Saul being the most wanted man by the high council.

That escalated rather quickly I think.

But that is exactly how God works.

You see. God can instantly take your heart and change it and set you on fire with the Holy Spirit and send you out to tell the world about His love.

Making those that despised you still afraid and those that were for you wonder what happened.

God works in mysterious ways. Just hold on and enjoy the ride!

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Jesus appears to Seven Disciples

After these things Jesus showed himself again to the disciples by the Sea of Tiberias; and he showed himself in this way. Gathered there together were Simon Peter, Thomas called the Twin, Nathanael of Cana in Galilee, the sons of Zebedee, and two others of his disciples. Simon Peter said to them, “I am going fishing.” They said to him, “We will go with you.” They went out and got into the boat, but that night they caught nothing. Just after daybreak, Jesus stood on the beach; but the disciples did not know that it was Jesus. Jesus said to them, “Children, you have no fish, have you?” They answered him, “No.” He said to them, “Cast the net to the right side of the boat, and you will find some.” So they cast it, and now they were not able to haul it in because there were so many fish. That disciple whom Jesus loved said to Peter, “It is the Lord!” When Simon Peter heard that it was the Lord, he put on some clothes, for he was naked, and jumped into the sea. But the other disciples came in the boat, dragging the net full of fish, for they were not far from the land, only about a hundred yards off. When they had gone ashore, they saw a charcoal fire there, with fish on it, and bread. Jesus said to them, “Bring some of the fish that you have just caught.” So Simon Peter went aboard and hauled the net ashore, full of large fish, a hundred fifty-three of them; and though there were so many, the net was not torn. Jesus said to them, “Come and have breakfast.” Now none of the disciples dared to ask him, “Who are you?” because they knew it was the Lord. Jesus came and took the bread and gave it to them, and did the same with the fish.This was now the third time that Jesus appeared to the disciples after he was raised from the dead. (John 21:1-14, NRSV)

Don’t you think they would have questioned Jesus when He asked them if they had any fish and when they said no He said to cast the net to the right side of the boat? Really we’ve been out here all night and haven’t caught anything don’t you think we cast the net on the right side of the boat? But they don’t. Either they are too tired, or they really want to catch some fish. So they do it. And when they do, they catch so many fish they can’t pull the net into the boat.

That is when they realize it is Jesus. I wonder where did Jesus go? He appeared to Mary on Easter, and then to the 10 on the evening of Easter. Then to the 11 disciples including Thomas the week after. And then here to the 7 on the Monday after that. So where did Jesus go in between these appearances to the disciples?

But here is the point, I wonder, but it really doesn’t matter. If it was important for us to know, we would know. But it is not important for our journey. God is with us, Jesus never left us. We are in His presence, even when we question it. Know He is always with you. Leading you and guiding you as you walk the path you trod.

 

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hungry

Then Jesus called his disciples to him and said, ‘I have compassion for the crowd, because they have been with me now for three days and have nothing to eat; and I do not want to send them away hungry, for they might faint on the way.’ The disciples said to him, ‘Where are we to get enough bread in the desert to feed so great a crowd?’ Jesus asked them, ‘How many loaves have you?’ They said, ‘Seven, and a few small fish.’Then ordering the crowd to sit down on the ground, he took the seven loaves and the fish; and after giving thanks he broke them and gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the crowds. And all of them ate and were filled; and they took up the broken pieces left over, seven baskets full. Those who had eaten were four thousand men, besides women and children. After sending away the crowds, he got into the boat and went to the region of Magadan. (Matthew 15:32-39, NRSV)

Where are we going to find food enough for all of these people?

How long had the disciples been with Jesus?

How many miracles have they witnessed by this point? And yet they still don’t get it.

But would we be any different?

We would question. We would wonder. We wouldn’t understand.

So be hungry for what God as to do and ask how you will get to be a part of His plan, and allow Him to work through you.

 

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Rend your hearts

Blow the trumpet in Zion; sound the alarm on my holy mountain! Let all the inhabitants of the land tremble, for the day of the LORD is coming, it is near a day of darkness and gloom, a day of clouds and thick darkness! Like blackness spread upon the mountains a great and powerful army comes; their like has never been from of old, nor will be again after them in ages to come. The LORD utters his voice at the head of his army; how vast is his host! Numberless are those who obey his command. Truly the day of the LORD is great; terrible indeed—who can endure it? Yet even now, says the LORD, return to me with all your heart, with fasting, with weeping, and with mourning; rend your hearts and not your clothing. Return to the LORD, your God, for he is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love, and relents from punishing. (Joel 2:1-2, 11-13, NRSV)

The day of the Lord is near!

And this is not a day we should be looking forward to. It will be dark and foreboding, it will be a time for weeping and mourning.

So we must prepare! We must turn from our internal seeking times, and look beyond our selves. We must turn to the Lord and do what He has asked us to do.

We must rend our hearts, and hand them over to God, so that He might infuse them with His steadfast love that will heal all wounds, and allow Him to bind them back together in His love.

So Rend your heart and return it to the Lord!

 

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Praise the Lord!

Praise the LORD! Praise the LORD from the heavens; praise him in the heights! Praise him, all his angels; praise him, all his host! Praise him, sun and moon; praise him, all you shining stars! Praise him, you highest heavens, and you waters above the heavens! Let them praise the name of the LORD, for he commanded and they were created. He established them forever and ever; he fixed their bounds, which cannot be passed. Praise the LORD from the earth, you sea monsters and all deeps, fire and hail, snow and frost, stormy wind fulfilling his command! Mountains and all hills, fruit trees and all cedars! Wild animals and all cattle, creeping things and flying birds! Kings of the earth and all peoples, princes and all rulers of the earth! Young men and women alike, old and young together! Let them praise the name of the LORD, for his name alone is exalted; his glory is above earth and heaven. He has raised up a horn for his people, praise for all his faithful, for the people of Israel who are close to him. Praise the LORD! (Psalm 148, NRSV)

God has created everything we see and everything that we try to see through science out in the galaxies!

He set the limits of creation in place, and fixed the bounds of everything.

Even if we do not praise Him, all of creation does all around us.

Listen as the mountains declare His majesty!

Listen as the stars sing of His wonder!

Listen as the trees shout His awesomeness!

All of creation exalts Him!

Why not join the chorus, and sing His praise!

 

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marveled

And when he got into the boat, his disciples followed him. A windstorm arose on the sea, so great that the boat was being swamped by the waves; but he was asleep. And they went and woke him up, saying, “Lord, save us! We are perishing!” And he said to them, “Why are you afraid, you of little faith?” Then he got up and rebuked the winds and the sea; and there was a dead calm. They were amazed, saying, “What sort of man is this, that even the winds and the sea obey him?” (Matthew 8:23-27, NRSV)

Jesus was asleep. That should have been enough for the disciples, right?

I mean if Jesus isn’t worried about the storm and is sleeping then it is probably nothing for the disciples to worry about…

And were they really perishing? They thought they were…

And when Jesus calmed the storm, they marveled at what had happened…

They were amazed our reading says.

But if we can trust Jesus, we won’t need to wake Him, or worry. Even in the storms He will calm us and be with us to see us through.

And to me that is the biggest marvel of all.

Even knowing who I really am, He still is with me, and walks through the storms of my life, even the ones I cause, to see me safely through.

 

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Lost

‘Take care that you do not despise one of these little ones; for, I tell you, in heaven their angels continually see the face of my Father in heaven. What do you think? If a shepherd has a hundred sheep, and one of them has gone astray, does he not leave the ninety-nine on the mountains and go in search of the one that went astray? And if he finds it, truly I tell you, he rejoices over it more than over the ninety-nine that never went astray. So it is not the will of your Father in heaven that one of these little ones should be lost. (Matthew 18:10-14, NRSV)

Are the sheep that are in the fold in danger? They could be but there is safety in numbers. Now yes a wolf could come in and scare a group and get a sheep. But the idea here is that Jesus cares for those who have left the fold and are searching for greener pastures.

He cares for the wanderer so much that He is willing to leave the fold on the mountain and go searching for the one that is lost. He will risk everything, in fact He already did. He gave His life for the lost sheep…

So we can not despise or look down upon those who are not in the fold, because once you were not in the fold. But because Jesus loved you enough to go looking for you, you are now here. So look on those who are searching for greener pastures with love and help them to find our great shepherd!

 

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