Amazing Life

39 He went in and said to them, “Why all this commotion and wailing? The child is not dead but asleep.” 40 But they laughed at him.

After he put them all out, he took the child’s father and mother and the disciples who were with him, and went in where the child was. 41 He took her by the hand and said to her, “Talitha koum!” (which means “Little girl, I say to you, get up!”). 42 Immediately the girl stood up and began to walk around (she was twelve years old). At this they were completely astonished  Mark 5:39-42....."The miracles of Jesus were the ordinary works of His Father." George MacDonald...."Where the wailers proclaimed death, Jesus speaks life." Chris Tiegreen

It would be easy to look at this passage of Scripture and make it all about having a positive faith attitude, coupled with speaking positive words. Many think that this is the key to faithwalking. I think to do so puts all the emphasis upon ourselves, and give Jesus a supporting role in the events of our life. We see the place we want to be, the results we want to achieve, determine that we will think right, speak right, and pray right, and then Christ will accommodate us by making it all come to pass. Central to all of it is what we want, and what we do in the process. Christ has a role, albeit important, but in the end, just a role. The main emphasis is upon ourselves.

Let me say that I fully agree that we do need to speak, think, and believe rightly, but we are not depending upon these elements. I doubt that our doing so even constitutes real faith. To follow that pattern makes everything depend upon what we do, rather than who He is. I once heard a very good brother say that we needed to do all of the things listed above, speak, think, believe positively, because if we didn't, "We give God an 'out,' and He doesn't have to respond." Not only is this a total misunderstanding of the character of God, it reduces true faith to a formula, that if followed, guarantees the desired results. When we do this, we are not worshiping a great and mighty God, but a very small one, able to be manipulated and controlled by us. We, and not He, take center stage. Tiegreen says that, "Miracles must be done in the presence of desperation and faith." To come to the place of total desperation is to come to the place of complete surrender. If Jesus is to come fully into a "room," than all self-reliance must be put out of that room. The wailers, mourners, and mockers all saw the situation as beyond hope. Jesus put them all out, and all that were left were two desperate parents and three believing disciples. Three disciples who likely had no idea what to do other than look to their Lord.

I think that in both the world and the church, we will live in the midst of three groups. First will be the "wailers, mourners, and mockers." They see no hope anywhere, and either spend their time bemoaning it all, or laughing at anyone who holds any kind of hope. We don't lack for them. The second group are the formula followers. They know what they want, and they know how to get it. They look to God while trusting themselves. They'll try to convince you that their way is the right one, and if in some way the Father has not answered your prayers as you wished, they'll be quick to put the responsibility squarely upon you. You should have followed the formula. You gave Him an out. Now you're left with nothing but guilt. The last group is the smallest, but I think has the most clear view of who He is. They're comprised of those who are both beyond the point of desperation, like the parents, yet believe and hope, as did the disciples. The have no expectations of Him, but full expectation in Him. I believe it is these who will see not only miracles, but real manifestations of His life and glory all along the way. No conditions placed upon Him, just a simple trust in Him. These are the ones who, as James Robison puts it, will "live amazed." Living amazed in the presence of an amazing God. Amazing life!

Three groups. To which do you belong? If you are in the room into which Jesus enters, would He put you out, or bid you stay?

Pastor O

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   May 2019   
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