Lent, pt. 18

And with a final burst of strength, she extends her arm with fingers grasping until, finally, they close on cloth. The hem of His garment.

hem3

Instantly, she feels whole. Healed. Yes, the pursuit has wrought victory over pain!

Her faith was champion! She pursued and was now devoted.


What a story! It would be great if we all had success stories like this woman. After so much toil and suffering, the end of that season came and she was healed!

There was Pain for 12 years. Lent, pt 14

This led to Desperation. 

But, because she did not go to Jesus first, a Problem arose. Lent, pt. 15

And she became Disillusioned.

People were in her way. Lent, pt. 16

They were potential Distractions.

Nothing would stop her Pursuit. Lent, pt. 17

Her Determination was strong.


As we finish her story, Jesus speaks and this woman is healed.

What was the Product of this journey? Now, fully healed, she was Devoted to Jesus.

Sure, she may have been frightened because she did not ask permission or even speak to Jesus. She just reached out and grabbed his robe!

All of her fears or misgivings were dismissed after speaking with the Lord.

She became a devoted follower of Jesus. At least I think she did. The bible does not give us her story after this encounter. So dream with me…

When Jesus performed other miracles, she would be in the background affirming that Jesus is really doing this and it is not some magic trick.

Was she at the scene during one of the miraculous feedings? Can you imagine her sharing some bread with a friend and explaining her own healing?

Or, she was witnessing the death of her Lord. As he hung on the cross, she would urge those around her that this man is innocent. He is God! He healed me!

Sure, those are just speculations on my part but it is fun to think about the future when we see the present.

What is Jesus doing right now.? Will your future be affected by your present?

Simply put, are you devoted to Him?

I hope my words can spur you on to devotion.

Whatever phase (pain, problem, people, pursuit, or product) you are in, keep moving! Don’t let the devil win. Jesus already won. Just live it out.

As devoted followers of Jesus, we can change our world. After all, Jesus changed us first!

devoted

 

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Lent, pt. 13

As I mentioned yesterday, I want to share some thoughts on Mark 5.

Here are the verses:

“A large crowd followed and pressed around him. 25 And a woman was there who had been subject to bleeding for twelve years. 26 She had suffered a great deal under the care of many doctors and had spent all she had, yet instead of getting better she grew worse. 27 When she heard about Jesus, she came up behind him in the crowd and touched his cloak, 28 because she thought, “If I just touch his clothes, I will be healed.” 29 Immediately her bleeding stopped and she felt in her body that she was freed from her suffering. 30 At once Jesus realized that power had gone out from him. He turned around in the crowd and asked, “Who touched my clothes?” 31 “You see the people crowding against you,” his disciples answered, “and yet you can ask, ‘Who touched me?’ ” 32 But Jesus kept looking around to see who had done it. 33 Then the woman, knowing what had happened to her, came and fell at his feet and, trembling with fear, told him the whole truth. 34 He said to her, “Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace and be freed from your suffering.”” NIV Mark 5:24b-34

This is a somewhat familiar story. It might not rank with the feeding of the 5000 or David and Goliath, but it still has great meaning and potential for you and me.

This passage is multi-faceted so it will take a few days to get through it.

To start with, there is an overall aspect that is most important.

For the woman in the story, her goal was to get to Jesus.

Let that sink in.

Jesus was the goal.

For us, during this Lent season, Jesus should be our goal.

Whatever the pain, people, or problems that we encounter, Jesus is our aim.

As you sleep tonight, dream of that goal. That glorious goal of someday being with Jesus.

Ah, what a glorious day indeed.

See you tomorrow!

 

Anatomy of a Miracle

Miracles. What are they? How can they take place? What can we do to make them?

I think it is safe to say that anybody would welcome a miracle in their life. I mean, why not? Healing? Fixing of relationship? More money? ______________________?

Why do miracles take place? As far as I am concerned, God does a miracle as He sees fit. ONLY God can do it and He does not always explain the circumstances!

But I think we have a part. When following a cake recipe, it is important that you get all the ingredients otherwise the cake won’t turn out right.

cake fail

The difference between my wife and I decorating cakes! Ha!

While I am not baking a cake here, I am listing the ingredients for a miracle.

And for the miracle to take place, to actually happen, all three of these need to be present. Let’s go back to the Jordan river to see the Anatomy of a Miracle.

  1. A miracle consists of an Objective Impossible for you to Obtain. The Israelites had a promise given to them many years prior to this point. Literally, God had told them that He would take them to the Promised Land. They had their eyes set on an objective. We all need something that holds our attention. Call it a goal, desire, objective or whatever; you need to be looking at something ahead of you or you will never move forward. Flip the coin. That objective that you want-it must be impossible for you to get. For a miracle to take place, you first need to be looking at something that you cannot get on your own.  
  2. A miracle consists of an Obstacle Insurmountable for you to Overcome. There was a river in the way. A fast-flowing river that would prevent them from entering the Promised Land. Is there an obstacle in your way? Is it something that you cannot overcome? Good. You are on your way to a miracle. If you have a goal but something is blocking you then I see that you are two-thirds closer to God doing something great in your life. Whether that obstacle is a person, an idea, a negative thought, a physical thing, it must insurmountable for you.
  3. A miracle consists of an Opportunity Included for you to Obey. Yes, the dreaded ‘O’ word. The older I get, I keep coming back to the idea that all I can ever do is obey. That is all God asks of me. Yes, He wants my heart and mind but my obedience is that handing over of those things to Him. Every time I get stuck, I get an opportunity to obey. Standing before the river, the command was to step into the river. When facing an obstacle, do I obey and take the step of faith? For the Israelites, it was a literal step. For me, what is my step of faith? For you, how can you obey God today?

It is my opinion that someone would need all three of these”ingredients” for a miracle.

However, one thing I need to make clear is this: God can and will do miracles in His sovereignty. I can’t force God to do something. This might be debatable but I feel like God will do what He pleases when and how He pleases. That is part of what makes Him God.

Let me end 2018 with a recap:

  • A miracle consists of an Objective Impossible for you to Obtain. 
  • A miracle consists of an Obstacle Insurmountable for you to Overcome.
  • A miracle consists of an Opportunity Included for you to Obey. 

Or, just simply obey God with all your heart. No matter how small or unimportant it may seem, trust what God is telling you.

Who knows, you may be experiencing more miracles in this next year! So go ahead and take that step of faith!

step faith

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Need for a Miracle

Well, the year is almost finished. Christmas is over. 2018 is almost done.

As part of my year-end routine, I think back and reminisce. Inevitably, my thoughts meandered to this blog. If I may assist your remembering, here are links to the previous posts on Joshua, the Israelites, and the crossing of the Jordan river.

  1. 40 years and 97 days!; 2. Crowd or Committed? ; 3. Rivers: obstacles or opportunities? 4. This ark don’t float! 5. Let it go…and not the song from Frozen.

These blogs speak about the Israel nation as they approached the Jordan river. This river marked the border of the Promised Land. They were almost there! And like I said at the end of “40 years and 97 days!”, they needed to prepare for war.

God designed it so that His people would need to fight their way through the land. Living in freedom was going to take work. No, not work, war.

I will try to connect the dots in my head now so this blog might actually make sense to you (and me).

connect the dots

As I recall 2018, there were many hardships and accomplishments. From travels to remodels, lots happened.

But there is more. My relationship with God has room for growth. So while 2018 was good, 2019 will be better.

The Israelites had food to eat. They were surrounded by families. Everything they needed, they had while in Egypt. But they were still in bondage.

Does that feeling ever relate to your life? I have nothing to complain about in my life but I can’t shake the feeling that there is more. Like I am on the verge of entering the Promised land.

So the need for war.

I want more in 2019. That basically means I am signing up for war. As a follower of Christ, I am already in a war. But I want to fight head on, on the front lines.

Perhaps the people of Israel were ready to fight. It seems that, at this point, they were ready. Primed, if you will.

The Jordan river is the only thing left in their way. And it would take a miracle.

miracle

Now, as I look forward to 2019, there are some expectations I have:

  1. 2019 will be better than 2018.
  2. My relationship with God will grow.
  3. I will be in a war.
  4. I need a miracle.

I have one more post for 2018. It will also be the last post about the Israelites and their miracle-working God at the river Jordan.

You might be in need of a miracle. In reality, we all do. God has to do something because life would not be worth living without His touch. The only way to cross over Jordan and into God’s freedom is through a miracle.

Let God make 2019 miraculous!

Don’t know what a miracle looks like?

Please tune in a few days from now to read about the Anatomy of a Miracle.

40 years or 97 days!

August 2 was 40 years ago! Reality says it was actually 97 days. It only seems like 40 years  but so much has happened. In fact, I had to re-read my previous 4 posts to catch myself up with my train of thought!

Click here to go back and catch up yourself. Thank you.

Real quick…the Israelites are on the verge of entering the Promised Land!

They had heard from God.

Jericho had been spied upon.

Joshua relayed God’s orders.

They were ready for that miracle.

They had even consecrated themselves.

Here is verse 5 of Joshua 3, “Joshua told the people, “Consecrate yourselves, for tomorrow the Lord will do amazing things among you.”

If I may, I would like to speak of the “amazing things” the Lord can do.


Since my last post in early August, there has been a big change in my life.

I got a new job.

I still work at the Olive Garden part-time.

I still perform weddings.

But now, I get to teach science at a private Christian school!

Since this is twominuteswithtim and not twohourswithtim, I will spare the details.

The Lord did an amazing thing in my life.

The Israelites shuffled through sand for forty years before they got their miracle.

Me? It was only 28 years. God called me into ministry in 1990. You can read about that call here and here.

It just fits. Like that last puzzle piece. This job is a perfect fit for me. I am truly in awe of how God worked this out.

puzzle piece

But it has also been some of the most difficult work that I have ever done.

Listen to verse 10, “This is how you will know that the living God is among you and that he will certainly drive out before you the Canaanites, Hittites, Hivites, Perizzites, Girgashites, Amorites and Jebusites.”

Going into the Promised Land meant they were going to war.

Sure, I can say that I am living in the promised land. I can also say that I am at war.

So while God has done so much to lead me here, there is so much more ahead.

Whether you are on the east side of the Jordan waiting to cross over or…

You have entered God’s promise for your life,

There is work to be done. We are at war friends.

More on the war and fighting stuff next time.

For now, just enjoy God’s faithfulness and don’t forget to sharpen your sword.

sword-sharpening-600x600