Holidays are over, but I’ve bought the weather back with me! and my heart is filled with the warmth and sunshine (as a result of having spent huge amounts of time in the sun, with my family and filling my heart and soul with good things. One of the highlights for holidays for me is reading and journaling…I got to spend some chunks of time doing just that with some great coffee, of course….. This blog is written for the women at Hills, to inspire them to pray for others and reach out to others knowing that other women are all over the world are together, making their mark by playing their part.
Over the past few weeks I have been reading the gospel of Luke. (If you want hear some great preaching on this book check out Mark Driscol sermons as he preaching his way through the gospel of Luke all year) Last week I was in chapter seven; the story is about a Roman Officer, who has a slave he values very highly and this slave is in need of a miracle: he is very sick and close to death. This man with great authority is unable to fix this problem so he seeks out the Jewish leaders he knows to send for Jesus to come and visit his slave. The Jewish leaders come to Jesus and implore and beg him to heal the man and they use some interesting criteria to leverage Jesus mercy and compassion.
Today when it comes to seeking Jesus for a miracle for someone in your world what criteria will you use to get Jesus attention and the miracle you are desiring. These Jews are a bit like me: they forget how Jesus works and beg him to do something based on the fact that this slave deserves it: he is a good man, worthy of being healed and he even helped build their synagogue. …. I find myself often imploring Jesus to do a miracle on behalf of another with the same criteria: `Jesus this one deserves miracle’.
Do you sometimes find yourself in the position of deciding who needs your prayers or mercy most based on who they are and what they have done? We can choose who in our world needs our prayers and our love based on what they have done, how hard they have worked, how valuable they are to us, what value they bring to others…. Surely we know Jesus better than that!!! …but it doesn’t stop us trying to leverage his grace based worth and value as if what he has to offer is based on such things.
Jesus never pours his love and mercy and grace on us according to what we deserve because none of us deserve it. Our value does not come form anything we do or don’t do, it comes from him. No one is worth his grace, nothing we do or say can leverage him based on who we are but rather who he is. If we got what we deserved we would never receive his grace. 0Jesus ends up healing the slave and he credits the faith of the Roman Officer, because he understands Jesus authority to heal. How do you decide who deserves your mercy today, your prayers today, your grace, your compassion, your faith, your love. Is it based on whether or not they deserve it or rather on the authority Jesus has to do it and the authority he has given you to go and do what he did? He pours out according to his grace and we have been given authority to pour out according to His grace as well. Maybe that person doesn’t deserve it…but neither did we.. Maybe today you need a miracle…what are you using to leverage Jesus compassion, you good works, your righteous acts or maybe you don’t feel you deserve it because you have not done enough …He doesn’t offer his grace and mercy based on what you deserve but on who He is…and his authority to do so.
NOTES FROM ED: Happy Birthday Sarah Warren!