Matthew 9:27-38

Thy Word:

Jesus Heals The Blind

“After Jesus left the girl’s home, two blind men followed along behind him, shouting, “Son of David, have mercy on us!”

They went right into the house where he was staying, and Jesus asked them, “Do you believe I can make you see?”

“Yes, Lord,” they told him, “we do.”

Then he touched their eyes and said, “Because of your faith, it will happen.” Then their eyes were opened, and they could see! Jesus sternly warned them, “Don’t tell anyone about this.” But instead, they went out and spread his fame all over the region.

When they left, a demon-possessed man who couldn’t speak was brought to Jesus. So Jesus cast out the demon, and then the man began to speak. The crowds were amazed. “Nothing like this has ever happened in Israel!” they exclaimed.

But the Pharisees said, “He can cast out demons because he is empowered by the prince of demons.”

The Need For Workers

Jesus traveled through all the towns and villages of that area, teaching in the synagogues and announcing the Good News about the Kingdom. And he healed every kind of disease and illness. When he saw the crowds, he had compassion on them because they were confused and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. He said to his disciples, “The harvest is great, but the workers are few. So pray to the Lord who is in charge of the harvest; ask him to send more workers into his fields.” Matthew 9:27-38 NLT

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My Thoughts: Is it just me or at this point in our study of Matthew are you starting to feel the tension from the Sadducees and the Pharisees about Jesus? One thing for sure, we know it is one-sided. Jesus knows full well what the religious leaders are up to and what they are planning, but he never attempts to stop them from following him and witnessing his miracles and healings.

Although Jesus wants to heal the people’s sicknesses, he also wants to change their hearts and change their propensity for sin. However, the crowds are clamoring for physical healing over anything else and Jesus has such compassion for the people coming to him, he heals out of mercy.

We see this mercy in action when two blind men follow Jesus all the way to the house where he is staying. When they call him Son of David they are professing faith that they believe he is the Messiah. This emphasized to Jesus the depth of their faith and how much they really wanted his help.

brown and black welcome bulletin board

In spite of Jesus continually asking for confidence about what He has done to heal, those who are healed do just the opposite, which causes more and more to bring their sick to him.

As a Mother, I have mixed feelings about whether or not I could keep quiet! I know if I had a sick loved one I would be relentless in my pursuit of Jesus for help. If He healed them, how would I respond when people asked me how they were healed? I would want to shout it from the rooftops! I can’t help but think in the excitement of the moment one of the biggest questions they didn’t ask was how to honor the request of Jesus when asked.

Overall, I believe it shows us Jesus wanted to be known as more than just a miracle healer. Yes, he had compassion to heal (save) them from their illness, but Jesus wanted to redeem them and give them eternal salvation.

Then a demon possessed man is brought to Jesus. This demon was causing the man to be mute. The moment the demon is gone the man can speak and everyone is amazed…, except the Pharisees who proclaim Jesus can do it because he is empowered by the prince of demons.

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That makes me have an interesting “hmm” thought…., raise your hand if you think that demon jumped right out of that mute man and right into that Pharisees dark heart! (Yeah, me too!)

In spite of the religious leader’s opposition and accusations, Jesus continues to travel from town to town teaching the Good News about the Kingdom. ”He healed every kind of disease and illness. When he saw the crowds, he had compassion on them because they were confused and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd.”

Finally, he gathers his disciples and leaves them (us) with a very important responsibility:

He said to his disciples, “The harvest is great, but the workers are few. So pray to the Lord who is in charge of the harvest; ask him to send more workers into his fields.” Matthew 9:37-38 NLT

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Jesus didn’t just want to heal these people and have it end it there, he wanted committed disciples! Make no mistake about it, this is what he wants from us too. Our actions, our words, and certainly our lives should reflect the good news of Jesus, and we should bring others to Christ by using our specific gifts. We may not always get it right, but we just need to keep learning and never stop working the harvest, which are the lost who are in need of Jesus.

God didn’t gift me with a beautiful voice so I could bring people to Jesus by singing, he never gave me the ability to preach from the stage like Billy Graham, and there are lots of other ways I’m no good at sharing the gospel.

But the #1 way I pray to work the harvest is either one-on-one with someone who wants to know more about Jesus, or through these blogs. In fact, that is the primary goal of my blog and my act of obedience to the call of Jesus.

And, if you tell me you are broken and Jesus can’t love you or use you, I will stand toe-to-toe with you and tell you that is a lie from the pit of hell! Then I will show you from the word of God how He wants to use your mistakes for your benefit and His glory, just like he did with me and so many others.

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And if you still don’t/won’t believe…, well, that’s on you…, because God is calling people who are willing to work the harvest and time after time in the Bible, and in real life, we see him call imperfect people to do great things.

There is only One who is perfect and that is Jesus. We have to quit making excuses and get busy working the harvest.

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Closing Prayer: Father God, I believe we all need to be taught to broaden our horizon and look beyond what is just in front of us for the harvest. Yes, we need to volunteer in our churches, but I have a feeling You have a harvest that needs some special workers which may be a little beyond our scope, so may we fully rely on You to help us. Open the eyes of our hearts so we can see where you want us to go, and use the special gifts you have given each of us. Lord I know I have been guilty of complacency and distractions, and I pray that I banish that from my life and move forward with the task you have called me to do, which is to finish my book and honor You through this blog. In the mighty name of Jesus I pray. Amen.

Matthew 9:18-26, Mark 5:24-34, Luke 8:41-56

Thy Word:

Jesus Heals in Response to Faith

Matthew 9:18-26 NLT

“As Jesus was saying this, the leader of a synagogue came and knelt before him. “My daughter has just died,” he said, “but you can bring her back to life again if you just come and lay your hand on her.”

So Jesus and his disciples got up and went with him. Just then a woman who had suffered for twelve years with constant bleeding came up behind him. She touched the fringe of his robe, for she thought, “If I can just touch his robe, I will be healed.”

Jesus turned around, and when he saw her he said, “Daughter, be encouraged! Your faith has made you well.” And the woman was healed at that moment.

When Jesus arrived at the official’s home, he saw the noisy crowd and heard the funeral music. “Get out!” he told them. “The girl isn’t dead; she’s only asleep.” But the crowd laughed at him. After the crowd was put outside, however, Jesus went in and took the girl by the hand, and she stood up! The report of this miracle swept through the entire countryside.”

Mark 5:22-43 NLT

“Then a leader of the local synagogue, whose name was Jairus, arrived. When he saw Jesus, he fell at his feet, pleading fervently with him. “My little daughter is dying,” he said. “Please come and lay your hands on her; heal her so she can live.”

Jesus went with him, and all the people followed, crowding around him. A woman in the crowd had suffered for twelve years with constant bleeding. She had suffered a great deal from many doctors, and over the years she had spent everything she had to pay them, but she had gotten no better. In fact, she had gotten worse. She had heard about Jesus, so she came up behind him through the crowd and touched his robe. For she thought to herself, “If I can just touch his robe, I will be healed.” Immediately the bleeding stopped, and she could feel in her body that she had been healed of her terrible condition.

Jesus realized at once that healing power had gone out from him, so he turned around in the crowd and asked, “Who touched my robe?”

His disciples said to him, “Look at this crowd pressing around you. How can you ask, ‘Who touched me?’”

But he kept on looking around to see who had done it. Then the frightened woman, trembling at the realization of what had happened to her, came and fell to her knees in front of him and told him what she had done. And he said to her, “Daughter, your faith has made you well. Go in peace. Your suffering is over.”

While he was still speaking to her, messengers arrived from the home of Jairus, the leader of the synagogue. They told him, “Your daughter is dead. There’s no use troubling the Teacher now.”

But Jesus overheard them and said to Jairus, “Don’t be afraid. Just have faith.”

Then Jesus stopped the crowd and wouldn’t let anyone go with him except Peter, James, and John (the brother of James). When they came to the home of the synagogue leader, Jesus saw much commotion and weeping and wailing. He went inside and asked, “Why all this commotion and weeping? The child isn’t dead; she’s only asleep.”

The crowd laughed at him. But he made them all leave, and he took the girl’s father and mother and his three disciples into the room where the girl was lying. Holding her hand, he said to her, “Talitha koum,” which means “Little girl, get up!” And the girl, who was twelve years old, immediately stood up and walked around! They were overwhelmed and totally amazed. Jesus gave them strict orders not to tell anyone what had happened, and then he told them to give her something to eat.”

Luke 8:41-56 NLT

“Then a man named Jairus, a leader of the local synagogue, came and fell at Jesus’ feet, pleading with him to come home with him. His only daughter, who was about twelve years old, was dying.

As Jesus went with him, he was surrounded by the crowds. A woman in the crowd had suffered for twelve years with constant bleeding, and she could find no cure. Coming up behind Jesus, she touched the fringe of his robe. Immediately, the bleeding stopped.

“Who touched me?” Jesus asked.

Everyone denied it, and Peter said, “Master, this whole crowd is pressing up against you.”

But Jesus said, “Someone deliberately touched me, for I felt healing power go out from me.” When the woman realized that she could not stay hidden, she began to tremble and fell to her knees in front of him. The whole crowd heard her explain why she had touched him and that she had been immediately healed. “Daughter,” he said to her, “your faith has made you well. Go in peace.”

While he was still speaking to her, a messenger arrived from the home of Jairus, the leader of the synagogue. He told him, “Your daughter is dead. There’s no use troubling the Teacher now.”

But when Jesus heard what had happened, he said to Jairus, “Don’t be afraid. Just have faith, and she will be healed.”

When they arrived at the house, Jesus wouldn’t let anyone go in with him except Peter, John, James, and the little girl’s father and mother. The house was filled with people weeping and wailing, but he said, “Stop the weeping! She isn’t dead; she’s only asleep.”

But the crowd laughed at him because they all knew she had died. Then Jesus took her by the hand and said in a loud voice, “My child, get up!” And at that moment her life returned, and she immediately stood up! Then Jesus told them to give her something to eat. Her parents were overwhelmed, but Jesus insisted that they not tell anyone what had happened.”

*****

My Thoughts: Today I’ve included extra scripture from the books of Mark and Luke about the sick child and the desperate woman because they offer more personal details. I’m a lover of details and I hope you are too.

man holding girl while walking on street

Our story opened with the leader of a local synagogue named Jairus whose daughter is very ill. In fact, Matthew’s accounts says by the time the man came to Jesus she was already dead. In the book of Luke we learn she is his only daughter and she is twelve years old.

In all three accounts we see Jairus falls at the feet of Jesus pleading for his daughter’s life, including in the account from Matthew who reported she was already dead. Jairus doesn’t hesitate to call on Jesus because he believes Jesus can bring her back to life. I love that. This man has amazing faith.

Also in all three accounts we see that Jesus doesn’t hesitate, he goes willingly to heal the child. By this time the crowds following Jesus are enormous.

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As a parent, I can’t help but have these thoughts and questions about Jairus:

  • I wonder if he was calm as they were headed to his home?
  • I wonder if he felt such urgency for his child he wanted to take the hand of Jesus and run to his home?
  • I love that this synagogue leader never hesitated to humble himself and ask for the help of Jesus in spite of the Pharisees and Sadducees obvious hatred of Jesus. In fact, the eyes of those leaders would have probably been on him that very day, but I wonder if he ever gave that a thought?
  • Jairus had to have known incurring the leaders wrath meant he might have lost his job, but I wonder if that even crossed his mind?
  • I wonder if he realized what an expression and example of love and faith he was for the followers then and continues to be for us today?

Regardless of all the pro’s and con’s for going to Jesus, this man appears to have one goal in mind: to save his beloved daughter.

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Then something big happens, Jesus is suddenly interrupted on the way to the home of Jairus by a very physically ill woman. Here is what we learn about her: she’s been bleeding for twelve years, she had suffered a great deal at the hands of doctors AND paid them all she had. She had gotten no better but in fact had gotten worse. Their conclusion was there was no cure for what she had. I wonder if the doctors reached this conclusion when she had no more money?

In spite of their conclusion, the woman believes she has one hope left: Jesus. She believes this so deeply in her heart, she doesn’t believe it is even necessary to speak with Jesus or touch Him. Her faith is so strong she believes He can heal her if she simply touches his robe. She discreetly works her way through the crowd to get close enough to Jesus in order to bend down and touch the edge of his garment.

Why? Well, she wasn’t supposed to be out among the people because the law clearly stated:

Whenever a woman has her menstrual period, she will be ceremonially unclean for seven days. Anyone who touches her during that time will be unclean until evening. Leviticus 15:19 NLT

She was literally breaking Jewish law being out among the people. But Jesus was her only hope and He was there so she took a huge step of faith. Leaving her home she put her faith ahead of any fear of retaliation from the religious leaders (remember they are there!). Instead she puts everything at risk on the hope she could get near enough to Jesus to touch his robe and have her faith fulfilled. I love that!

Jesus knows all about her before she even came near to him (oh yes He did!). He walked to Jairus’s home giving her the opportunity to catch him and fulfill her faith. He could have turned around at any time and said, “woman, you are healed” but He wanted her to exhibit her faith in Him by going against all odds including the law. I love the idea that her faith was so big Jesus could hear the cries of her heart.

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Once she touches the garment of Jesus she is healed, and she knows it! Jesus does too, of course, and He wants the crowds to witness her great faith so he calls out the person who touched him. Can you imagine her fear, especially by breaking the law and being among so many people? She could have been stoned! However, in the Mark and Luke account we see instead she comes forward and humbles herself at the feet of Jesus, the same way Jairus did.

Although Jesus’ request for her to come forward could have caused her to lose her life, in all three accounts Jesus tells her, “your faith has made you well.” He confirms her healing and acknowledges her faith which was and continues to be a mighty example then and now.

Then Jesus and the crowd continue on to the home of Jairus. I’m back to my “wondering” about this man. I’m wondering is he feeling desperate about the delay, especially when the messenger arrives (in Mark and Luke) to tell him his only daughter, whom he obviously loves, has died?

However, before the father sheds a single tear Jesus says to Jairus in the book of Luke, “Don’t be afraid. Just have faith, and she will be healed.” He knows and sees this desperate father’s emotions. Everything has happened so quickly from the moment Jairus first approaches Jesus and we can only imagine the ricochet of emotions going through his heart and mind. However, like this woman what other choice does he have but to believe Jesus can and will do what he says He will do?

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When they arrive at the house the funeral crowd laughs at Jesus when he declares the child is just asleep. Jesus sends everyone away but the loving parents and three of his disciples, then Jesus takes the child’s hand and she is raised from the dead. In spite of Jesus asking to keep it quiet, it spreads through the countryside. Then Jesus sits down in the house of a Jairus and eats with them.

We have two desperate situations, but Jesus changed everything in a matter of moments. Our take away from these two amazing stories is that Jesus Christ can make a difference when all else seems impossible depending on our faith. It doesn’t even have to be faith as amazing as these two people had:

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“You don’t have enough faith,” Jesus told them. “I tell you the truth, if you had faith even as small as a mustard seed, you could say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it would move. Nothing would be impossible. ” Matthew 17:20 NLT

Have you taken an inventory of your faith lately about circumstances you may be praying about, even for a long time? These stories cause me to look at two very long term prayers again and how I am praying…, is it with faith for the outcome?

When I look at family situations in my life, I cannot fathom how it can be healed because there is such self-centeredness and hatred. But I know God sees more than what I see and He can do anything. So I believe and I pray.

There are many I love who have not surrendered to Christ and I don’t understand how it will happen because of what I know. But I also know and believe the information I have is irrelevant to God. He wants my faith, so I pray, I trust, and I believe in Him.

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That’s exactly where God wants us, humbled at the feet of Jesus. Amen

*****

Closing Prayer: Father I surrender the desires of my heart to You because I know you are a holy, righteous, and loving God. I ask for your forgiveness for where I have failed to believe that with You all things are possible, especially when I surrender to Your plan, Your will, Your way. Thank you Jesus that I can come to You for all things at all times. In the name of Jesus I pray. Amen.

 

 

 

 

 

Matthew 9:14-17

Thy Word:

One day the disciples of John the Baptist came to Jesus and asked him, “Why don’t your disciples fast like we do and the Pharisees do?”

Jesus replied, “Do wedding guests mourn while celebrating with the groom? Of course not. But someday the groom will be taken away from them, and then they will fast.

“Besides, who would patch old clothing with new cloth? For the new patch would shrink and rip away from the old cloth, leaving an even bigger tear than before.

“And no one puts new wine into old wineskins. For the old skins would burst from the pressure, spilling the wine and ruining the skins. New wine is stored in new wineskins so that both are preserved.” Matthew 9:14-17 NLT

*****

My Thoughts: We covered the subject of fasting in my blog Matthew 6:16-18 ( https://tinyurl.com/ycgzzbd9 ).

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So let’s look at what’s really happening here: a little envy and absolutely some disgruntled comparisons!

Comparison…, how many times have I gotten myself in trouble by comparing what I have or don’t have, or what I do or don’t do with someone else? Too many, and this time I’m not sharing details!

Definition of comparison: An examination of two or more items to establish similarities and dissimilarities

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John the Baptist’s (JTB) disciples saw a distinct difference between how they worshipped God, and how the disciples of Jesus worshipped God. What I love is JTB’s disciples went directly to Jesus to ask their question and express confusion. When we are confused about something Jesus wants us to seek answers from Him through prayer, looking for answers in the Bible, and by asking Godly men or women.

Where they went wrong was their hearts already had a pre-determined answer for the question and Jesus knew it. They believed Jesus and His disciples were not worshipping properly and they also didn’t believe Jesus was the Messiah. We already know the religious leaders had rejected Jesus as Messiah, so including the Pharisees in their comparison was a very bad idea!

Fasting, in the old religious laws, was a sign of mourning for sin and to prepare for the coming Messiah. Jesus’ disciples didn’t need to fast because Jesus is the Messiah and He was with the disciples. Jesus didn’t condemn fasting—He himself fasted, but Jesus wanted everyone to understand that fasting must be done for the right reasons. John’s disciples had the right start, but they needed to take the next step and trust in Jesus as the Messiah.

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Whenever we compare, we usually focus on the wrong things which may only be a small piece of the larger picture, don’t you think? Perhaps their question should have been “Jesus, help us to understand why we are fasting and You and your disciples are not.” Their hearts would also require a change, and they would need to be willing to listen and learn, rather than accuse.

I love how my Life Application Study Bible summarizes these verses regarding Jesus and the old religious system: “His [Jesus] purpose was to bring in something new, though it had been prophesied for centuries. The new message, the gospel, said that Jesus Christ, God’s Son, came to earth to offer all people forgiveness of sins and reconciliation with God. The gospel did not fit into the old rigid legalistic system of religion. It needed a fresh start.”

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I love getting a fresh and new start because the old is erased, and everything is new again!

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Closing Prayer: Father God, we are so grateful for Jesus Christ, who died so we can not only have everlasting life, but we can also have a fresh new start. The old “me” is gone and I’ve been made new in Christ and I praise Him for that truth! Father I also pray that when we find ourselves in a position of comparing, before we get disgruntled and allow our feelings to make a mess of the situation, we STOP, DROP and PRAY. May we first ask for Your guidance to help us to have eyes to see the bigger picture before we embarrass and bring shame on ourselves! We ask this in the loving name of Jesus. Amen.

 

Genesis 24:5-7

Thy Word:

“The servant asked, “But what if I can’t find a young woman who is willing to travel so far from home? Should I then take Isaac there to live among your relatives in the land you came from?”

“No!” Abraham responded. “Be careful never to take my son there. For the Lord, the God of heaven, who took me from my father’s house and my native land, solemnly promised to give this land to my descendants. He will send his angel ahead of you, and he will see to it that you find a wife there for my son.” Genesis 24:5-7 NLT

*****

My Thoughts:

woman holding never stop working print notebook

I know this seems random, and it surely isn’t the book of Matthew, but I just had to share with you the “WOW” God shared with me today about these verses!

Let me give you a little background: Abraham left his people many years prior to this moment at the command of God. (Full story of Abraham in Genesis chapters 12-25.)

“The Lord had said to Abram, “Leave your native country, your relatives, and your father’s family, and go to the land that I will show you.” Genesis 12:1 NLT

[God also tells Abram:] “This is my covenant with you: I will make you the father of a multitude of nations! What’s more, I am changing your name. It will no longer be Abram. Instead, you will be called Abraham, for you will be the father of many nations.” Genesis 17:4-5 NLT (Abram is Abraham; I’m talking about the same person.)

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Abraham is nearing the end of his life and he wants his son Isaac to marry a woman from the people of his hometown, and not the neighboring Canaanites. So he tells his trusted servant this is his desire and they make a vow that the servant will go back and find a wife for Isaac.

(Okay, yeah I know this seems wild in our lifetime, but stick with me because that’s not what blew my mind!)

The servant agrees, but you can see he is a little worried so he asks his master:

“But what if I can’t find a young woman who is willing to travel so far from home? Should I then take Isaac there to live among your relatives in the land you came from?” Genesis 24:5 NLT

This is where it gets exciting! Do you see what Abraham says to him (us)?

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“No!” Abraham responded. “Be careful never to take my son there.” Genesis 24:6 NLT

Abraham’s tone is one of authority and he is adamant (No! Never) that while God made the initial covenant with him to be a father of nations, he understands clearly this includes his generations going FORWARD!

To net that out he is saying, “DON’T GO BACK!”

I think the biggest mistake we make as believers is to “go back.” We hit a snag in the road and rather than follow our faith and what we know is the way we are to go, we go back to whom we used to be or what we had. Why? Probably because we get comfortable, it’s easier, or maybe we just can’t see the way to go.

We especially do it with heartache or sin. We allow those two things to sometimes define who we are rather than living forward as redeemed and forgiven by Jesus, heading to the Promised Land.

But Jesus wants us to understand when He has given us a call to “leave” and “go” he doesn’t want us to go back! Is your mind blown like mine with this revelation??? (I’m kind of excited here!!!!! Is it a coincidence my iPhone app just told me to pause and breathe, i.e. settle down?)

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Here is my “Abraham” story: I received the call that I was to “leave” teaching at our church and “go” in the spring of 2014. The original call to leave came in January but I may have ignored it (I did), because I wasn’t sure why (I am a detail girl), so I just pretended I didn’t hear the call. (God, why are you asking me to tell on myself again?)

When I was praying over the class before it started I heard a voice say:

“What are you doing?”

Oh. My. I knew I was in trouble! I was scared because I knew I was being disobedient. I prayed that God not take my sin out on the class and I promised I would stop teaching after it ended and I would not “go back.” I still didn’t know where I was going, but I knew I had to leave there.

(Just so you know what a handful I am for God, a friend asked me to teach a lesson for her a few years later, and this time I was smart enough to pray about it first. God’s response was very clear: partial obedience is not obedience! Do you see the translation there? DON’T GO BACK!)

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Eventually, God revealed my “go,” which is to write a book. I was super excited at first, but then I realized where He was going and what He wanted me to share. It’s been over two years and I’ve started, and I’ve stopped, and I’ve started again. However, I DID NOT GO BACK! I’ve stood still a lot, but God has been faithful with me in my stoppages:

“The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still.” Exodus 14:14 NIV

I like comfortable things and comfortable tasks, so this call to “go” has been the most difficult thing the LORD has ever asked me to do. I am about 2/3’s finished and it is hard, and I’ve cried a lot, and I’ve stopped a lot. But, I am NOT going back. Amen.

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Closing Prayer: LORD! I love this revelation you gave me today because it gives me strength and courage! I pray it encourages others as well. Thank you for the excitement I have for what You want me to do, and may I finish it well, according to Your timing, and for Your glory. In the name of Jesus I pray. Amen.

 

 

Matthew 9:9-13

Thy Word:

Jesus Calls Matthew

“As Jesus was walking along, he saw a man named Matthew sitting at his tax collector’s booth. “Follow me and be my disciple,” Jesus said to him. So Matthew got up and followed him.

Later, Matthew invited Jesus and his disciples to his home as dinner guests, along with many tax collectors and other disreputable sinners. But when the Pharisees saw this, they asked his disciples, “Why does your teacher eat with such scum?”

When Jesus heard this, he said, “Healthy people don’t need a doctor—sick people do.” Then he added, “Now go and learn the meaning of this Scripture: ‘I want you to show mercy, not offer sacrifices.’ For I have come to call not those who think they are righteous, but those who know they are sinners.”” Matthew 9:9-13 NLT

*****

My Thoughts: Today we get to meet Matthew who becomes a disciple and writes this book in the Bible that we are walking through. Matthew (also called Levi) was a despised Jewish tax collector and his life was dramatically changed by Jesus.

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Don’t you love how Jesus uses imperfect people to do some of the most amazing things? I do, because as a broken woman (i.e. sinner) it gives me hope that God can and will continue to use me!

I seem to be in a “tell on myself” kinda mode lately and I’m about to do that again!

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My husband and I attended a large church many years ago and they started making some big changes. I typically love changes because it means they have a new plan to bring in new people which also means the potential for new believers. However, there was one big change that didn’t set well with either of us. In fact, let’s just say one of us (me) may have been a little more disgruntled about it than normal.

My husband, who is wise, suggested we take this matter to the Lord, so we did. We started by praying to get our hearts in the right place, which was doing what was best for our church, even if that meant the best solution was for us to leave. Then we chose a book in the Bible and read it together for a few weeks. It was amazing how God led us to answers and peace about the situation. Here were our conclusions about the changes, especially the one we were not fond of:

  1. Was it illegal? No.
  2. Was it immoral? No.
  3. Was it unjust? No.
  4. Was it about us? NO!! We were already saved!!!!
  5. Was the goal to bring unbelievers into the church and change their hearts? YES!!!!!!

black and brown wooden wall decor

The church was attempting to achieve all the right goals, and we learned that when we asked questions about the new changes. The more we learned the more we supported their goals. It was exactly as this verse said:

When Jesus heard this, he said, “Healthy people don’t need a doctor—sick people do.”

We still didn’t like the one change but we learned to work around it. For the next two years we volunteered in multiple roles to help the church staff achieve their goals.

Eventually we did change churches but it was because we moved. Leaving our old church on good terms was so much better for our hearts and souls than had we changed because of frustration or for selfish reasons!

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We must never forget as believers we are there to support the church and use our skills as volunteers to help them bring in unbelievers! Finally, when those unbelievers begin to arrive don’t be judgmental for goodness sake! Jesus tells us:

“I want you to show mercy…. For I have come to call not those who think they are righteous, but those who know they are sinners.” (Emphasis is mine)

And I believe as sinners that continues to define all of us, even if we are believers! (If you aren’t sure you are a sinner, read last week’s blog!)

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Closing Prayer: Father God, it’s been my experience that one of the hardest break ups we can face as believers is when we leave our church for any reason, so I pray we do it with the right motivation in our hearts. Once we’ve been saved it’s our job to support the church however we can to bring those unbelievers to our doorstep, and show mercy when they arrive. May I remember that always and serve as You served us, Jesus; with everything. Amen.