Did you miss it?

Mark 9:12 – 13

Then He answered and told them, “Indeed, Elijah is coming first and restores all things. And how is it written concerning the Son of Man, that He must suffer many things and be treated with contempt? But I say to you that Elijah has also come, and they did to him whatever they wished, as it is written of him.”

The world was waiting for Elijah himself to come and restore all things. They were so busy looking for a certain appearance they missed when he arrived.

The scripture said that “Elijah” will come first and restore all things.  It also said he will suffer many things and be treated with content.  The disciples soon discovered the Word was discussing John the Baptist.  John the Baptist preached in the wilderness about the coming of Jesus Christ.  He suffered greatly and was later executed. He was treated poorly but spoke of the coming of the Lord.  Elijah had come as the predecessor, but the world missed it, because it wasn’t in the package they were looking for.

How many times do we miss what God has in store for us because of the package?

What have you prayed for lately?  What has God promised you?

  • A husband
  • New Job
  • Increase in finances

We must be careful to not let the enemy distract us away from our promised package.  The package may not be delivered exactly how we imagined.  Our husband might not be 6’5 with a 6 figure job.  He could be the man you grew up with, who is 5’10, in love with Christ, and earns enough to make ends meet.  Are you overlooking your promise because of the wrapping of your package?

John the Baptist preached about the coming of our King and Savior.  The man who would save the world through sacrifice.  The Word of God predicted everything that would happen, but so many missed it.

How many times do we miss God’s messages being delivered because we don’t think the person giving the message is “worthy”?

So many people missed the message John the Baptist was giving because they didn’t believe in his message and didn’t recognize who he was.  They didn’t think that a man in the wilderness could possibly know anything about religion and the Christ.  They missed his message because they didn’t feel he was “worthy”, when all the while he was the “Elijah” they were waiting for.  They missed their blessing because the package wasn’t what they expected.

God speaks to us through His Holy Spirit. We only have to stop and listen.  When we study the Word of God our eyes are opened and our hearts are softened.  If we don’t continually study His Word, we can easily miss what God has in store for us.  Don’t miss it!

So, did you miss it?

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Who’s in your circle?

Mark 8:31-38

And He began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer many things, and be rejected by the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and after three days rise again.  He spoke this word openly. Then Peter took Him aside and began to rebuke Him.  But when He had turned around and looked at His disciples, He rebuked Peter, saying, “Get behind Me, Satan! For you are not mindful of the things of God, but the things of men.”  When He had called the people to Himself, with His disciples also, He said to them, “Whoever desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me.  For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake and the gospel’s will save it.  For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul?  Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul? 38 For whoever is ashamed of Me and My words in this adulterous and sinful generation, of him the Son of Man also will be ashamed when He comes in the glory of His Father with the holy angels.”

The call to Ministry is a difficult call.  Even those who support your Ministry and appear to understand your purpose may question what God has called you to do.

In this passage, at first glance, it appears Peter was expressing his concern for Jesus’ well being.  In our flesh we would think:

  • He’s only trying to protect Jesus
  • He is looking out for Him
  • He is protecting Jesus from Himself

BUT, Jesus quickly rebukes him and tells the enemy to get behind Him!  Jesus was discussing God’s Will, not the Disciples will.  God’s Will is sometimes very hard for our flesh to handle.  Peter’s flesh automatically responded when he heard Jesus speak of his murder.  Peter was a disciple. Peter was a friend. Peter was concerned and afraid. Peter experienced a flurry of emotions that came from his flesh.

How many times have our friends persuaded us to step outside of God’s will?  Do we rebuke them?  Or do we concede to our flesh and say “maybe you are right.”  Our flesh can be very weak.  It’s important that we stand strong and recognize who is in our circle.  Who is speaking through your friends?  Is it the enemy trying to distract you from God’s Will?

This can be difficult to decipher.  Later in the passage Jesus describes discipleship.  He knows the walk will not be easy.  But He asks, “What do you benefit if you gain the whole world and lose your own soul”.  Let’s break it down:

  • What’s the benefit if you sleep with him, pass away, and quickly face your Master?
  • What’s the benefit if you take a job paying twice your salary, but takes you away from your ministry?
  • What’s the benefit to gain everything you’ve ever wanted.  You get your house, husband, children, high paying job, etc. but pass away and enter hell for eternity.

Is it worth it?  Is there anything in this world worth not seeing the Kingdom of God?  The answer, of course is, no!  Everyday we must battle our flesh.  We have to give up the desires of our flesh and fully commit to following Christ.  This can be soooooooo hard, because our flesh is selfish.  It wants to do whatever makes us feel good.  It does not consider our future.  Christ considers our future and forgives our past.  The enemy wants us to forget the future and focus on how to please ourselves today.

It’s very important to recognize the enemy in everything, even in members of your circle.  Jesus quickly recognized the enemy.  He recognized him in Peter within a matter of seconds (maybe sooner).  Are we able to recognize the enemy within our circle as quickly?

I pray that we recognize the enemy pulling us away from the will of God.  I pray that I pay attention to who is in my circle.  Who is in my ear?  What are they saying?  Does it conflict with the word of God?  Does it conflict with my purpose?  If so, the enemy should be called out and rebuked immediately.

So I ask, Who’s in your circle?

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Can you see anything yet?

Matthew 8:23- 25

So He took the blind man by the hand and led him out of the town. And when He had spit on his eyes and put His hands on him, He asked him if he saw anything.    And he looked up and said, “I see men like trees, walking.”  Then He put His hands on his eyes again and made him look up. And he was restored and saw everyone clearly.

Jesus asked the man, “Can you see anything now?”  Of course Jesus knew the answer and knew that he could be healed in just a moment.

In your life you’ve encountered Jesus and asked Him to heal you.  After speaking with Him, He asks you, can you see anything yet? Are you healed yet? If not, this means He still has work to do.  You should build your faith and continue to return to the Savior who can completely heal and restore you.

In this passage, the blind man was partially healed when Jesus asked if he could see anything.  The blind man could see a little bit. But, it was blurry.  His sight was not completely restored.  Did the blind man run off and begin his journey back home as if He was healed?  Of course not!  He stayed still until God completely restored him.

How many times do we jump up and get back into our “normal routine” before we are completely healed.  For example, you just finished worshipping and praying about being healed from lustful thoughts.  But immediately after worshipping you jump up, leave Jesus at the door, and run smack into temptation.  You see this fine brother at the gym who is checking you out. You begin to fall right back into those lustful thoughts!  You think to yourself.  I just prayed about this!  I was just in worship praising God for His healing.  But you forgot you left Christ at the door.  Before you left He asked, “Can you see anything yet?  Are you completely restored yet?”  Based on your thoughts, the answer is no.  You have to take Christ everywhere you will be tested.  We must continually fall at His feet and sit still until we are completely restored.  Once restored you will be able to pass each test.  But you won’t pass until you give Him time to complete your restoration process.

The blind man knew to sit still until Christ completely healed him and restored his sight.

If you are struggling with anything, make sure you are completely restored before you step out.  If you are struggling with alcohol, make sure you are completely restored before you place yourself in areas that sell alcohol.  If you are struggling with fornication, make sure you are completely restored before you visit your boyfriend alone at his house.  The enemy knows your weaknesses and would love to use them against you.

So…. Can you see anything yet?  If no is the answer, you know where you need to go.  Back to Him, so that He can finish the process of restoration.

#workinprogress

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