Wednesday, November 6, 2019

Shepastor: “The Mark of a Christian Part III: Endurance That is Inspired by Hope...”

1 Thessalonians 1:1-3 New International Version (NIV)

1 Paul, Silas[a] and Timothy,
To the church of the Thessalonians in God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ:
Grace and peace to you.
2 We always thank God for all of you and continually mention you in our prayers. 3 We remember before our God and Father your work produced by faith, your labor prompted by love, and your endurance inspired by hope in our Lord Jesus Christ.


In Part II of the series, “The Mark of a Christian," Shepastor explored the example set by the Christians in Thessalonica through their “Labor prompted by love.” Today, we will consider the final example in Part III of this series, “Endurance that is inspired by hope.” The third mark of a Christian is that they are inspired by hope. That’s why Paul says, “we are not as those who have no hope.”

We cannot endure without hope. The term endurance means, “the ability to withstand hardship or adversity especially: the ability to sustain a prolonged stressful effort or activity like a marathon runner's endurance. I have never run in a marathon. I have never participated in those 5k runs or even walks. But I know people who have and they train for months and weeks to prepare for the long distance. A marathon is not like a sprint. A sprint is a quick short distance run that takes a lot of energy. But a marathon runner needs energy and stamina – staying power. They need endurance.

In order to withstand hardship and adversity, you’ve got to believe that there is a light at the end of the tunnel, something greater is on the other end of the journey, that your work, your faith, your labor is not in vain! You’ve got to be inspired by hope. For the Christian, our hope is in Christ. We have an eternal hope and we have hope for the here and now. Our eternal hope is that Jesus died for our sins and rose for our salvation. Our eternal hope is that if we confess that Jesus is Lord and believe in our hearts that God has raised him from the dead, we shall be saved. Our eternal hope is that our names are written in the Lamb’s book of life. Our eternal is that if this earthly tabernacle should be destroyed, we’ve got another building, not made with hands, whose builder and maker is God!

Our earthly hope is that through Christ we can do all things. Our earthly hope is that through Christ we are more than conquerors. Our earthly hope is that Jesus came that we might have the abundant life. Our earthly hope is that we believe to see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living!!! Hope is “a feeling of expectation and desire for a certain thing to happen.” The reason why hope is a mark of the Christian is because as God’s people, we live with expectation. We are not like Eor in Winnie the Pooh. We don’t walk around “under the circumstances.” We look up and wait for God’s promises in full expectation that what God said, He is willing and able to do.

We don’t allow our spirits to remain downcast. We like the Psalmist challenge our hearts and declare, “Why art thou cast down oh my soul and why art thou disquieted within me? Hope thou in God who is the health and the help of my countenance!” He said, I shall yet praise him for the help of his countenance…In other words, when the Psalmist took a look at God, the creator, God, the giver and the sustainer of life, God… the Lord God almighty who hung the moon and the stars in the sky he praised God for the help us his countenance. What is the countenance? The term “countenance” means the look on a person’s face that shows one’s nature or feelings.

We know that God is not a person but a spirit - and none of us living have seen the face of God, but by the reading of His word and the experiences of our lives, we know and understand the nature of God. The personality of God – the way of God. God is a healer – he is a deliverer – he is a way maker – he is the source of our joy and our strength – God is all powerful – He is all knowing – He is everywhere and can do anything – God’s countenance – God’s nature.

So when we as Christians consider these things – the countenance or the nature of God we gain the hope to endure. When we look at our problems matched up against God’s power then we will move from telling ourselves about our problems and instead begin to tell our problems about our GOD!!! As God’s people, our endurance, our ability to withstand hardship, our ability to run the distance, our ability to press our way, our ability to stand the storm, our ability to “keep on keepin on” is inspired by our hope in God! As God’s people, may we take a page out of the character of the Thessalonian Christians…may we (1) Have work that is produced by faith, (2) May our labor be prompted by love and (3) And may our endurance be inspired by hope in Christ Jesus.

Until next Wednesday,
In Faith, Hope and Perseverance,
Pastor Chris
www.shepastorchris.org




Wednesday, October 23, 2019

Shepastor: “The Mark of a Christian Part II”

1 Thessalonians 1:1-3 New International Version (NIV)

1 Paul, Silas[a] and Timothy,
To the church of the Thessalonians in God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ:
Grace and peace to you.
2 We always thank God for all of you and continually mention you in our prayers. 3 We remember before our God and Father your work produced by faith, your labor prompted by love, and your endurance inspired by hope in our Lord Jesus Christ.


Last week, Shepastor explored the example set by the Christians in Thessalonica. In particular, we looked at their “work produced by faith.” This week, we consider the 2nd powerful characteristic exhibited by the Thessalonian Church, their “Labor prompted by love.”

Paul lifted this characteristic of the Thessalonian Christians. He honored them for labor prompted by their love. You have heard the phrase, “it was a labor of love…” The term labor connotes something more than just work. It conveys a sense of struggle, a pushing, even painful. When mothers are giving birth to a child, they refer to it as “labor.” They can tell how close the mother is to giving birth by the strength of the labor pains. When the baby is about to come forth, that’s when it hurts the most!

Paul said that the Thessalonian Christians’ labor was produced by their love. Even though it hurts, that mother is willing to go through the pain because they know that on the other side of that pain, will be a beautiful baby that they will hold, nurture, love and cherish for the rest of their lives. In a similar way, we push, we press, we suffer, we struggle to bring forth that which the Lord has planted within us because we love the Lord. Not only that, we love one another. Love will make you go the extra mile of the way. Love will compel you to get up and do what you don’t feel like doing. Love will urge you on when you feel like stopping. Love gives you what you need to press on further.

When we love something or someone, we go all out. We may not have much but we scrape together what we can to fulfill a need of someone that we love. SO in addition to having work that is produced by faith, another mark of a Christian is that their labor is prompted by their love.

Working in the church can be hard. Serving in the church, while it’s a joy, it can also be laborious. When nobody is watching, when nobody is applauding, when very few are serving and even fewer are witnessing, the “labor” then rests on a few. That happens in ALL churches, large, small and mid-size. Every church has what is called the “faithful few.” Because the labor of the ministry takes dedication. It takes sacrifice. It takes patience. It takes endurance. It takes LOVE…love of the Lord, love of God’s people, love of Christian discipleship and love for the lost. Jesus said, “They will know that we are Christians BY OUR LOVE!”

Love moves the Christian into a dimension above those who are just carrying out duties. Love is patient, love is kind, love is humble, love is not easily angered, love endures testing. Love is the more excellent way! Love helps you to turn the other cheek. Love helps you to ignore foolishness. Love enables you to pray for your enemies. Love makes us more like Jesus! The Christian labors in the work of the ministry because of their love. The mark of a Christian is labor prompted by love.

Next week we will look at the third mark of a Christian in this text, “endurance that is inspired by hope."

Until then,
In Faith, Hope and Perseverance,
Pastor Chris
www.shepastorchris.org

Wednesday, October 16, 2019

Shepastor: “The Mark of a Christian Part I”

1 Thessalonians 1:1-3 New International Version (NIV)
1 Paul, Silas[a] and Timothy,
To the church of the Thessalonians in God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ:
Grace and peace to you.
2 We always thank God for all of you and continually mention you in our prayers. 3 We remember before our God and Father your work produced by faith, your labor prompted by love, and your endurance inspired by hope in our Lord Jesus Christ.

The Thessalonian Christians were discouraged. Their loved ones were dying, time was passing, the church was being persecuted and it appeared that all hope was lost. This letter encourages the believers to keep the faith, knowing that God was with them, their faith would be rewarded and that Christ will return. The Apostle Paul begins this letter by lifting up the Thessalonians’ strong witness of faith, born out by their actions. He encourages them by letting them know that they are example to Christians everywhere, an example that continues to instruct us today.

In these few short verses, Paul outlines 3 impressive characteristics that the Christians at Thessolonica exhibited. (1) Their work produced by faith, (2) Their labor prompted by love and (3) Their endurance inspired by hope in Christ Jesus. In Part I of this series, we will explore the meaning of the first characteristic, “Work produced by faith.”

Let’s take a moment and consider “work produced by faith.” Picture in your mind where they were. Thessolonica was a large, metropolitan trading center in Greece. It became the capital of Rome. It was a busy business area with people from all over the world, selling, buying, bartering, arguing, pushing, shoving, demanding, drinking, cursing, possibly lewd and crude behavior. If you’ve ever been to New York City, downtown during rush hour or even just during other times of the day, you can get a sense of the hustle, bustle, fast pace. Now imagine trying to live a life that is completely opposite of that culture. Add to that persecution from the people around you as well as the government. That was the lot of the Christians in Thessalonica!

They were doing all that they could to learn, grow and walk in their new relationship with Jesus. They were swimming against the tide. They were also deeply committed to sharing their faith with others. They were workers. But not just any kind of workers, they were people who had work that was produced by their faith. It took FAITH for them to continue to do the work of the church in the midst of great persecution. They had to be able to see beyond what was before their eyes and believe that the sacrifice, their suffering, their struggle, their undaunted actions were not in vain.

The Thessalonian Christians’ work was produced by their faith. It can be challenging to keep on working, keep on praying, keep on believing, keep on serving, keep on planting seeds when everything around you is screaming your work is not making a difference. But their work was produced by their faith. That which comes out of the ground is called, “produce.” It was planted and spent a great amount of time in the dirt before it came bursting up through the soil with vegetables and fruit. Their work was the “produce” of their faith.

The Thessalonians worked because they had faith. They kept on being about their Father’s business because they had faith. One mark of a Christian is that they walk by faith and not by sight. If you can see the answer, if you can see the end result, if you can see just how everything is going to work out, then it is not faith. FAITH is the substance of things hoped for and the evidence of things not seen!

It takes faith to do the great works of God
. It takes faith to keep on working, keep on toiling, keep on building, keep on serving when everything is going against you and only a few people are standing with you. But the child of God understands that with God ALL THINGS are possible. The child of God understands that greater is he that is within you than he that is within the world.

The child of God understands that we need mustard seed faith… a little bit of faith is potent. A little bit of faith can help you to move mountains. A little bit of faith can produce GREAT results. Faith compels you to keep on working, keep on serving, keep on planting, keep on sacrificing because you see beyond the natural. You see victory in the spirit realm in the heavenlies.
You speak those things that be not as though they were. You remember where you’ve come from and you believe in where you are going. One mark of a Christian is work produced by faith.

Next week we will consider the 2nd powerful characteristic exhibited by the Thessalonian Church, in Part II of this series, "The Mark of a Christian: Labor prompted by love.”

Until then,
In Faith, Hope and Perseverance,
Pastor Chris
www.shepastorchris.org

Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Shepastor: “Who do YOU Say I Am???”

13 When Jesus came to the region of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, “Who do people say the Son of Man is?”
14 They replied, “Some say John the Baptist; others say Elijah; and still others, Jeremiah or one of the prophets.”
15 “But what about you?” he asked. “Who do you say I am?”
Matthew 16:13-20 New International Version (NIV)

During my morning devotion the other day, just as I was about to close my Bible, it fell open to this very familiar passage of Scripture. That day, however, the words, “Who do YOU say I am?” jumped off of the page and into my spirit! We know the story. Jesus is questioning his disciples about the messages from “the people…” their perceptions, views, beliefs about who he is. Jesus already knew their thoughts. He also knew the thoughts of the disciples. But by questioning them directly, Jesus forced them to stop and consider exactly what they believed about him.

On that particular day, I was wrestling with some internal thoughts, anxieties, fears and frustrations over various challenges. I have to be intentional about taking control of every thought and bringing them into subjection! But as I prepared to close my Bible, the Holy Spirit (I believe) caused the pages to fall open to those simple words, “Who do YOU say that I am?”

Suddenly, I felt peace. Why? Simply because I believe that Jesus is LORD! The term “Lord” means, “Someone or something having power, authority, or influence; a master or ruler” (Dictionary.com). Since I believe that Jesus has ALL POWER, authority and influence, since I claim Jesus as MY LORD and since I believe that He is master and ruler over ALL, I can trust Him completely to walk with me through my “stuff!” I trust Jesus to be the LORD in MY LIFE over every situation, circumstance, lack, mean spirit, enemy, unjust situation, gossiping tongue, illness, challenge and struggle!

If you are troubled, burdened, weary, fearful, doubtful, ill, lonely, broken, etc., stop and ask yourself, “Who do I say Jesus is?” When you, by faith stand upon Jesus’ identity as Lord, you will conquer ALL of the oppressive tactics of the enemy. Allow the Lordship of Jesus to comfort, strengthen, guide, encourage, bless and reassure you today.

Who do I say that Jesus is? HE IS LORD!!!

Post a comment or send me an email at Revcsmith1@gmail.com

Until next Wednesday,
In Faith, Hope and Perseverance,
Pastor Chris
www.shepastorchris.org

Wednesday, September 18, 2019

Shepastor: “Is Your Heart After God?”

Psalm 42[a][b]
For the director of music. A maskil[c] of the Sons of Korah.

1 As the deer pants for streams of water,
so my soul pants for you, my God.
2 My soul thirsts for God, for the living God.
(NIV)
42 As the hart panteth after the water brooks, so panteth my soul after thee, O God. (KJV)

One of the most beloved praise and worship songs used for meditation, As the Deer, is taken from this Old Testament Psalm, 42: 1-2. The words depict a gentle creature, a deer, possibly after a long journey, leaping upon mountains, traveling through valleys, walking along through pastures, tired, longing to drink from a fresh water stream. The King James Version emphasizes even more graphically, the thirst that the deer has, “panting” as if exhausted, drained, “thirsty.” Both convey a strong almost desperate desire for God.

An interesting commentary or introduction provides even greater context to this psalm. It says, “For the director of music” or “chief musician. A maskil of the Sons of Korah.” The term maskil means, “one versed in Hebrew or Yiddish literature,” (Merriam Webster). Not to be taken lightly, these “well versed” musicians came from a rebellious family line. They were the “Sons of Korah.” Korah was the ring leader of Israelites (one version calls them “men of renown”) who defied God and Moses in the wilderness, leading many astray (Genesis 16: 1-35). Their rebellion caused them to be swallowed up by the earth suddenly (Who can forget that dramatic scene as depicted by Cecil Be Demille’s “Ten Commandments!”).

How profound that God used a remnant from that rebellious family line to bring Himself glory through this beloved Psalm! Knowing their own history, knowing the shame of rebellion in their bloodline, knowing how an entire generation was destroyed, they chose rather to have hearts that longed for God. How powerful to know and learn from our history? What a loving and gracious God that will not hold the sins of our family line against us! What a blessing and privilege to know that with God’s help, we have the ability to change the dynamic of rebellion and dysfunction in our families!

But it starts with having a heart that is “after God.” A heart that is after God thirsts for God, longs for God, chases after God’s heart, God’s will, God’s wisdom, God’s Holy Spirit, God’s desire for our lives. To be a man or a woman after God’s heart is to love the Lord, reverence the Lord, honor the Lord with the totality of our being. It does not mean that we won’t make mistakes, make bad choices, do wrong things. We hold this treasure in “earthen vessels.” But it means that our desire and longing is to please God. Our heart longs to be united with God. Our heart longs to have pure motives a clean spirit.

None of this is possible without the aid of the Holy Spirit. Through Christ, we can do all things! When we long for God, thirst for God, “pant” for God, we come into agreement with Him. We seek to do His will. We strive to have clean hands and a pure heart. We desire to please God in all that we are, say and do. When we fall short, we repent and lean upon God’s mercy, grace and love to help us to do better. David was a man after God’s own heart not because he was perfect, but because he was yielded. He longed to do that which pleased the Lord. He worshipped the Lord with all of his might. He grieved over his sins and turned away from them.

The Sons of Korah chose the more excellent way. Despite their family dysfunction and rebellion, they chose to have hearts after God. Is your heart after God?

Post a comment or send me an email at Revcsmith1@gmail.com

Until next Wednesday,
In Faith, Hope and Perseverance,
Pastor Chris
www.shepastorchris.org

Wednesday, September 11, 2019

Shepastor: “Healing Comes in Phases”

Jesus Heals a Blind Man at Bethsaida

22They came to Bethsaida, and some people brought a blind man and begged Jesus to touch him. 23He took the blind man by the hand and led him outside the village. When he had spit on the man’s eyes and put his hands on him, Jesus asked, “Do you see anything?”
24He looked up and said, “I see people; they look like trees walking around.”
25Once more Jesus put his hands on the man’s eyes. Then his eyes were opened, his sight was restored, and he saw everything clearly. 26Jesus sent him home, saying, “Don’t even go intoa the village.”


The body is a wonderful metaphor for so many issues of life. Whether it is issues of cleansing, growth, physical illness and the need to regurgitate, rest etc., the body also reflects important and spiritual realities. Today I’d like to focus upon the healing aspects of the body and how the body can teach us something about emotional and spiritual healing.

Healing does not happen immediately. Whether it’s a cut, a bruise, surgical procedure or whatever, the body takes time to heal. Although science has tried to speed up the healing process with laser surgery, the body still demands a time for healing. Although they have “outpatient” surgery, the body demands that you get rest after even the smallest procedures. Even if you get cut and require stitches, the body demands that you take time to “dress” and care for your wounds. Why is it that we think that emotional and spiritual pain can be healed over night?

I would like to suggest that many of the physical pains that we experience pale in comparison to the emotional and spiritual pain that many people face. Think about our grief policies from work. You are blessed if you can get 2-3 days off of work when a loved one dies. The Jewish Community has this process right. They sit, “Shiva” for at least 7 days and in some instances 12 days. They allow themselves to deeply mourn and reflect upon the life and the legacy of their loved ones. They bury them almost immediately, but they reflect upon them deeply and slowly.

Our society, however, frowns upon individuals taking time to heal. Even in the church, we expect people to quickly rebound from loss, hurt and pain. We accuse people of “brooding” or not having enough faith. Where does this “hurry up and get through it” mentality come from? Jesus himself exemplified the need to spend time away from even those closest to him. Frequently he would go off by himself, the scripture says to pray. I suspect that Jesus was not only praying, but reflecting, communing, consoling and preparing himself to continue to serve amidst a people who did not understand, believe in or appreciate him. Jesus too was hurting.

Our text for today presents an interesting dilemma. Jesus who is God made manifest in the flesh seemed to have needed a “second shot” at healing the blind man. It appears that his first attempt “did not take.” But was it that he needed to try again or was Jesus teaching us something all together different?

Consider the following…

- A blind man is brought to Jesus

- Jesus uses “spit” to heal him

- His healing came in two phases

- Sometimes we need a “second touch” before our healing is complete

- We don’t understand the methods God uses to heal us

- We need to be honest about the fact that we still are not healed – still cannot see (had the blind man pretended like he was healed
completely, he never would have been given clear sight)

- “Don’t even go into the village…” Everyone will not be happy about your healing! Everyone will not understand your healing. You may
even jeopardize your healing by sharing it with some people.
Sometimes God has to "take us outside of the village" to bless us with healing.


- Healing takes time


Healing comes in phases
. God may sometimes use “spit and dirt” to heal us…sometimes the very things that we, under other circumstances would view as lowly and undesirable are used by God to make us see more clearly and yes, heal us.

Everyone will not understand what God has done and continues to do for you. Be prayerful and discerning about with whom to share your healing process. Avoid pretending that you are well, that you are whole, that you are healed when in fact you are still, “seeing men walking as trees.” Be honest with the Lord, yourself and select individuals about needing prayer, support and encouragement to press toward your healing.

Healing comes in phases. Healing takes time. Healing may happen in unexpected ways. Be “for real” about where you are in the healing process. Then and only then will you be able to see clearly and be made whole. Remember, healing takes time. There is no shame in admitting that you need a second touch!

Post a comment or send me an email at Shepastor1@gmail.com

Until next Wednesday,
In Faith, Hope and Perseverance,
Pastor Chris
www.shepastorchris.org

Wednesday, August 28, 2019

Shepastor: “Everybody Can’t Come in the Room!”

46 And Jesus said, Somebody hath touched me: for I perceive that virtue is gone out of me.
47 And when the woman saw that she was not hid, she came trembling, and falling down before him, she declared unto him before all the people for what cause she had touched him, and how she was healed immediately.
48 And he said unto her, Daughter, be of good comfort: thy faith hath made thee whole; go in peace.
49 While he yet spake, there cometh one from the ruler of the synagogue's house, saying to him, Thy daughter is dead; trouble not the Master.
50 But when Jesus heard it, he answered him, saying, Fear not: believe only, and she shall be made whole.
51 And when he came into the house, he suffered no man to go in, save Peter, and James, and John, and the father and the mother of the maiden.
52 And all wept, and bewailed her: but he said, Weep not; she is not dead, but sleepeth.
53 And they laughed him to scorn, knowing that she was dead.
54 And he put them all out, and took her by the hand, and called, saying, Maid, arise.
55 And her spirit came again, and she arose straightway: and he commanded to give her meat.
56 And her parents were astonished: but he charged them that they should tell no man what was done.
Luke 8: 46-56, KJV

In this text, crowds of people were swarming around Jesus. They saw him heal and deliver the sick and those possessed by demons. They saw him feed the multitudes with two fish and five loaves of bread. They heard him teach like no other leader had taught. I imagine that the crowd was so thick that Jesus could barely walk! This was the scene when a broken, pain riddled, sick ostracized women said to herself, “If I may just touch the hem of his garment, I shall be made whole.” The scripture says that this woman had been sick for 12 years with “an issue of blood.” She had spent all of her money on doctors and they could not heal her. She was bleeding nonstop for 12 years! In addition to her extreme pain physically, this meant that no one would touch her. She was “ceremonially unclean.” In that day, when a woman was on her period, she had to separate herself for a specific number of days and then go and be declared “clean” by the temple priest when the bleeding stopped. She was not to be touched by her husband or other men. She had to go through a process of purification. Therefore, this nameless woman was by herself, cut off from the Temple, cut off from society, cut off from being among family and friends. But she knew that if she could just get to Jesus and touch his hem, she would be healed!

At the same time, a man of great respect, high position and wealth needed help from Jesus. His name was Jairus. We don’t know the name of the bleeding woman, but we are given Jairus’ name. His daughter was sick unto death and he fell down at Jesus’ feet, begging him to heal her. She was his only daughter. As Jesus begins to go with Jairus, he abruptly stops and says, “Who touched me?” Baffled by the questions, the disciples say, “Master, all these folks are pressing in on you and you are asking, “Who touched me?” Don’t miss this…Jesus said, “someone touched me because I felt virtue go out of me.” When we come to Jesus in faith and in our depth of need, it touches Jesus in a special way.

Lots of people were physically touching Jesus, but this woman made a connection with Jesus out of the depth of her need and the power of her faith that Jesus would do something for her. She expected that Jesus would heal her. She believed that even his garment was filled with healing power. In other words, she didn’t even presume that he would talk to her. She didn’t think that she needed to hold a conference with Jesus. She didn’t even expect that he would necessarily notice her, but she believed that even if she could touch that which was associated with Jesus, it would be enough to heal her.

When we out of the depth of our human suffering, need and struggle determine that we want to be healed from Jesus, we will reach for him, even to just touch his hem. Can you imagine this woman’s inner thoughts? “Do what you do Jesus, however you choose to do it, but just heal me! I don’t have to be in your inner circle, I don’t have to associate with great people, you don’t have to physically come to my house, just let me touch the hem of your garment Lord, and I shall be healed!” That woman’s faith drew power out of Jesus in a way that others did not. There was something different about her faith!

At the same time, this man of high status humbled himself in a way that his followers in the synagogue had probably never seen. This wealthy, highly positioned, distinguished leader did not care what others thought. He too just wanted a touch from Jesus. He was desperate. When you get desperate enough, pride will go out of the window. When you have a great need, all you care about is the healing, the deliverance, the break thru. Jairus wanted his daughter healed and he believed that Jesus could and would do it.

But while on the way to the house, someone came running out to tell Jairus and Jesus, “Don’t trouble yourselves any longer, your daughter is dead.” Can you imagine the shock, the disappointment, the pain of Jairus? But hear again how Jesus responded to the situation…

50 But when Jesus heard it, he answered him, saying, Fear not: believe only, and she shall be made whole.
51 And when he came into the house, he suffered no man to go in, save Peter, and James, and John, and the father and the mother of the maiden.
52 And all wept, and bewailed her: but he said, Weep not; she is not dead, but sleepeth.
53 And they laughed him to scorn, knowing that she was dead.
54 And he put them all out, and took her by the hand, and called, saying, Maid, arise.
55 And her spirit came again, and she arose straightway: and he commanded to give her meat.
56 And her parents were astonished: but he charged them that they should tell no man what was done.


These verses tell us that the very people who were pressing in to see Jesus really did not believe that with God all things are possible. Sometimes people just want to go along with the crowd, see some tricks, enjoy a party, get a thrill, but they don’t really believe that Jesus is who He is! That was the difference between “the crowd” and the nameless woman. When the crowd touched Jesus, it was just a bunch of folks trying to get next to what they saw as a rock star. But when the nameless woman touched Jesus, he felt her faith and her deep desire to be healed. “You will search for me and find me when you search for me with all of your heart.” (Jeremiah 29:13, KJV).

Notice how Jesus only took certain people with him into the healing space. Notice how he put all those other folks out…the scoffers, the mockers, those laughing at the prospect of a resurrection. Learn this lesson – everyone can’t go into the healing, delivering and raising room with you. Jesus Himself knew that the doubt of others could zap the faith of Jairus. Therefore, Jesus declared, “Clear the room!” There will be times in your life when certain people cannot go with you. There will be miraculous things that God wants to do in your life but if the wrong people are around, the wrong people are in the room, the wrong people are in your space, they will block your ability to receive those miracles. It’s not that God can’t work around them, its that your faith will be hindered.

You can’t tell everybody everything…your vision, your dreams, your faith that God can heal what’s been diseased for decades, your faith that Jesus can raise that which looks like its dead, your faith that Jesus is able to give you a break thru! Some people are so focused on what they can only see with natural vision that they want to block you from seeing and receiving that which God has for you in the heavenlies. Jesus says, “Put them out of the room!”

Jesus identified key people to go with him into the room to raise Jairus’ daughter. In the same way, prayerfully identify key individuals who you know will pray with you, believe with you, stand with you, cry with you, hope with you and petition heaven on your behalf. That group is small…two or three people at the most. They don’t have to be perfect people, just faithful, loving and praying people. Doubting, scoffing, laughing people will drain you of your faith, throw water on your hopes, laugh at your dreams and ultimately cause you to miss out on all that God wants to raise in your life. PUT THEM OUT OF THE ROOM!

Don’t allow them room in your physical space. Don’t allow them room in your spirit or in your head. PUT THEM OUT! Like the nameless woman, stretch out to touch Jesus. By faith believe that God can and God will heal you. Like Jairus, humble yourself. Want God’s healing more than you care about what folks think about you. Allow Jesus to put the naysayers, the scoffers, those who laugh at the prospect of your healing, your deliverance, your vision, your RAISING…allow Jesus to put them out of your room!

Jesus still healing, raising, delivering and working miracles. Won’t you allow Jesus to do that and more in your life today?

Post a comment or send me an email at Revcsmith1@gmail.com
Until next Wednesday,
In Faith, Hope and Perseverance,
Pastor Chris
www.shepastorchris.org