From Coward to Bold, Brash and Beyond!

19 02 2015
By a fishing village in Sri Lanka

By a fishing village in Sri Lanka

 

Jesus one day said to his 12 men, let’s go on a “Road Trip” to the Big City. The 12 had mixed feelings.

Yes, they wanted to go to the Big City,  being in a little fishing village and the environment can get a little boring. Anything will be good for a little excitement!

But they were also aware that there was a plot on their leader’s life and they really didn’t want that kind of excitement, by walking into the very place where the big guns of the plot had their headquarters!

Anyway, they did not have a choice, as their leader, Jesus, had his eyes set on the task ahead of him. They are in the city and are admiring the big buildings and the architecture, when Jesus starts speaking about the Good News of the Kingdom of God, and says, “… This Gospel will be preached in all the world and then the end will come.” (Matthew 24: 14)

We note that the Gospel needs to be preached in all the world!

Of course, as they feared, Jesus is captured, tried unjustly, beaten badly and crucified. Well, so much for the plans of preaching the Gospel into all the world. Was this just a “dream of a visionary”, that went bad?

No leader, No Good News! Now what?

But, three days later, the whole plot of the story changes! Jesus does the impossible, and comes out of the grave, stunning the soldiers that were guarding the tomb and the religious leaders who had plotted against Jesus! Peter and John and the other nine disciples are also now stunned.

Then for 40 days more Jesus comes to them and shows himself in many different situations and encourages them and gives them goose bumps on their goose bumps! Yes, he is for real! He is alive, and the Good News is true!

And after the 40 days he is telling them, “ … you are the ones who are going to take the Good News of the Gospel to the whole world… but stay in Jerusalem till I send you the Holy Spirit!”

The Day of Pentecost arrives and they are filled with the Holy Spirit and things start to happen! Peter preaches and 3000 people are saved and baptized!

The next day, Peter and John are on their way to the temple and a man crippled for 40 years is healed and creates an uproar, because everyone knows he was a cripple, and now he is walking and leaping and praising God, right in front of their eyes!

Peter and John are brought before the big guns of the church, who threaten them with their lives if they don’t stop speaking about this Jesus, whom they had crucified and now Peter is saying is alive!

But Peter says, “We have to obey God rather than you!”  They are taken aback by their boldness, because they knew that Peter and John were just fishermen, they had not gone to Bible College and not had advanced degrees, but were ignorant and unlearned men. But, the clincher was, that they “… recognized that they HAD BEEN WITH JESUS!” (Emphasis is definitely mine!)

This is the key. We might be ignorant and unlearned and not have any academic degrees to our name, (they are good and I encourage people to get an education), but what the leaders saw, was that they had been with Jesus!

When we have spent time with Jesus, then we do have Good News that Jesus does have Life Changing powers!

Have I been with Jesus today? Have I shared moments of quiet conversation with Him, as we listen to Him speak to us through His Word, and then to respond to Him in speaking to Him, expressing our love to Him and opening our hearts to him share our burdens and concerns?

When we have been with Jesus, then we have a Story to share with the whole world. We have Good News to share about Him and His Kingdom!

Listen in to a message preached at Eagle Brook Church this past weekend at https://vimeo.com/119681341. Yes, a Bold Move!





Ask, and YOU WILL receive!

6 02 2015
God has a Banquet Table prepared for us!

God has a Banquet Table prepared for us!

Jesus and his disciples were leaving the city of Jericho and a blind man named Bartimaeus, was sitting by the side of the road, begging. When he heard that Jesus of Nazareth was passing by, he shouted, “Son of David, have mercy on me!”

The people rebuked him and told him to be quiet. But he shouted all the more. Then Jesus stopped and said, “Call him.” So they called the blind man, “Cheer up and get up, he is calling you!”

Throwing his cloak aside, he jumped to his feet and came to Jesus. And Jesus said, “What do you want me to do for you?” He replied, “Teacher, I want to see!” So Jesus said to him, “Go, your faith has healed you.” Immediately he was able to see, and he followed Jesus along the road.

An interesting story! And the question that comes to my mind is, “Why did Jesus ask Bartimaeus, what he wanted?” I believe that Jesus always like for us to make our requests known to him. Bartimaeus could have said, “Jesus, give me whatever you want!” But, then he might not have got what he needed the most – his eye sight back!

When King Solomon was crowned king, God said, “Ask me whatever you want, and I will give it to you!” Then when he asked for wisdom to rule the people of Israel wisely, God was pleased and also gave him added blessings.

We also see, that James says, “… you do not have, because you do not ask …”! (James 4:2)  Which reminds me of how in point of my life, I needed a car for transportation very badly, and I said, “God please give us a car!” A few days later, someone gave us a car to use. But after a few days, the car died and we could not use it. Then I prayed, “Please God, give us a car that will run well.” This time we received a nicer car which served us well for many, many years!

God wanted us to ask him for our needs specifically so that he can answer our prayers. Is it the experience in your life that you do not have, because you do not ask God?

For help and resources on how to study the Bible and the stories of the Bible, check the Resources page or write to tedsenapat@gmail.com

God Bless You and help you to believe in God and to ask Him. He WILL answers your prayers!!