Saturday, May 4, 2013

Blind faith, faith by sight, faith by touch - What Level Are You on?

Jesus says, “You of little faith, why did you doubt?” Matthew 14:31. You know, He doesn’t say it in a condemning manner either. That’s not his style.

Why do you doubt? I’ll go ahead and lay mine out there as to why I doubt.

• How can God use someone like me

• How can other people follow anything I say or learn when I’m not worthy

• How can God bless anything I do when I’m just a sinner saved by grace

• I’m ill-equipped

• I’m just a working mom of two kids trying to encourage other moms, but I’m just one mom. What difference can one woman make?

In case you didn’t notice the reason I doubt is because I see myself in the picture, and I know what a screw-up I can be. But Jesus is bigger. Jesus is greater. Jesus doesn’t have to save us, but he did. God doesn’t have to use us, but He does. It’s called GRACE.

Did you notice that the winds didn’t die down until Jesus and Peter were back in the boat? If the water had stayed calm, do you think Peter would have lost his train of thought, his point of focus? But if the water wasn’t choppy, if the wind was calm, would Peter have been more likely to say, “Hey, guys, look at this! I’m walking on water.” Sometimes I think God allows a little choppy water into our lives to help us readjust our focus.

The Bible then says those who were in the boat worshiped him saying, “Truly You are the Son of God” (14:33). Seriously? It took him walking on the water and calming the elements for them to realize his deity? The mere fact that he had just fed 5000 plus with only 5 fish and 2 loaves didn’t give them the assurance they were walking with God incarnate? What did it take to make you believe in Jesus Christ?

There’s a line in the children’s movie Polar Express, “Sometimes believing IS seeing.” Some have to see God in action, up close and personal, before they believe. Some won’t believe even then. These men went from Peter saying, “IF it’s You” in verse 28 to worshiping saying, “Truly You are the Son of God!” For them seeing was believing.

The fourteenth chapter concludes with Jesus arriving in Gennesaret. The men recognized him and brought all those who were ill in the community to be healed. Those who were sick just wanted to touch the tassels on His robe. According to what I could find, holy men wore white and had tassels on the bottom of their robes. These people were so desperate they asked to just touch his tassel and believed to be healed. For them, their faith required touching. It’s not that Jesus’ tassels held special powers. It was their belief that he could heal them and just a brush with his tassel was all it took. People were completely healed.

What is your level of faith? Are you willing to get out of the boat? Do you need to see Jesus work before you believe he’s working on your behalf? Or do you need to feel him to believe? Truth is on some level I’ve been on every one of them. I love to feel the presence of God on me and in me. I love to see Jesus working, but I also have to be willing to charge through the doors He opens without asking questions trusting He’s got it all worked out.

So, there you have it. We finished Matthew 14. I hope you got something out of it. I know I did. I love that about his Word. Know where I’m going next to study? I truly thought I was through, but my Bible study girlfriends pointed out this story is also in Mark and John, so I’m going to do some more studying. Will you join me?

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