Thursday, July 26, 2012

Personalize It

For the Word of the Lord is right and true; He is faithful in all He does.
- Psalm 33:4

My dear child, Sheslley, My Word is right and true; I am faithful in all I do. You can always count on what I say.

But the eyes of the Lord are those who fear Him, on those whose hope is in His unfailing love, to deliver them from death and keep them alive in famine.
- Psalm 33:18-19

My eyes are on you, Sheslley, for you hope in My unfailing love.  I will deliver you from death and will keep you alive in famine.

We wait in hope for the Lord; He is our help and our shield.
- Psalm 33:20

Wait in hope for Me; I am your help and your shield, my precious one.

[Journal entry: March 20, 2012]

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

The Edge of His Cloak

When they had crossed over, they landed at Gennesaret and anchored there. As soon as they got out of the boat, people recognized Jesus.  They ran throughout that whole region and carried the sick on mats to wherever he went -- into villages, towns or countryside -- they placed the sick in the marketplace.  They begged him to let them touch even the edge of his cloak, and all who touched him were healed.
- Mark 6: 53-56

Jesus was one famous, high-profile, head-turner, eye-catcher, headliner, history-maker individual of His time (and all time). He was like a magnet which people were drawn to Him wherever He went.

As I read the phrase, "as soon as," I could imagine Jesus stepping out of the boat and just as He stood having His deep breath, a man, probably a fisherman in his mid-age, while untangling his net, looked up, glanced at his side, and saw Jesus just arrived.  The fisherman to his surprise, tapped his buddy beside him with his elbow while saying, "Look! It's Jesus!"  Then, it went like a wildfire.  It was broadcasted throughout the whole region of Gennesaret that Jesus has arrived. I could imagine people crowded around Jesus.

The thickness of the crowd must have made Jesus and His disciples moved around town in a snail's speed. If this happened in modern day, Jesus must have been trending on Twitter, Top 1 in major search engines, and probably would have had a thousand "Likes" on Facebook and Instagram... hehehe!!!

Setting aside Jesus' popularity, what struck me in these verses was the response of the people.  They ran throughout the whole region; they carried their sick on mats; they placed the sick in the marketplaces. They followed Jesus to wherever He went.

And to me, this is the winner: They begged him to let them touch even the edge of His cloak [emphasis mine].  Imagine...the kind of faith they had!

Photo courtesy:
The edge of His cloak.
The edge.

That's it. All who touched Him were healed.


Imagine that!

Whoever Jesus touched was healed.  It is a given fact. This time, it's the other way around: whoever touched Him was healed. Jesus not only healed whom He touched, but also those who took the initiative to touch Him (even just the edge of His garment).

What's the secret to Jesus' healing power?

The power of healing did not come from touching Jesus' cloak.  The cloak did not have some special power.  Rather, it is by Jesus, through a person's faith, that one is healed. The kind of faith that says, Jesus can heal any disease and, that which is manifested through one's action. Only faith in Jesus can bring healing, and not through touching the edge of the cloak.

In Mark 5:34, Jesus said to the bleeding woman, "Daughter, your faith has healed you."  In Mark 9:23, Jesus said to the father of a demon-possessed boy, "Everything is possible for him who believes." In Mark 10:52, Jesus said to a blind beggar, "Go, your faith has healed you."

Faith is the key to healing.  Faith is the key to restoration.  Faith is the key to freedom.  And who is the object of faith? JESUS. How can one be saved? By faith in Jesus, not by works of our own.

Photo courtesy:
How can one be completely healed? As it is written in Acts 3:16, "By faith in the name of Jesus, this man whom you see and know was made strong.  It is in Jesus' name and the faith that comes through him that has completely healed him, as you can all see."

There is power and healing in Jesus' touch.  There is power and healing in Jesus' name.  There is power and healing being released as we believe that Jesus can.  He can when we believe He says He can! And He will!

Have faith!
Be assured!
Be confident that you can get healed, having faith even to the point of just brushing a tip of your finger on the edge of Jesus' cloak.

[Journal entry: July 12, 2012]

Monday, July 16, 2012

The Radiance of the Lord

Psalm 19
1 The heavens declare the glory of God;
    the skies proclaim the work of his hands.
2 Day after day they pour forth speech;
    night after night they reveal knowledge.
3 They have no speech, they use no words;
    no sound is heard from them.
4 Yet their voice goes out into all the earth,
    their words to the ends of the world.
In the heavens God has pitched a tent for the sun.
5     It is like a bridegroom coming out of his chamber,
    like a champion rejoicing to run his course.
6 It rises at one end of the heavens
    and makes its circuit to the other;
    nothing is deprived of its warmth.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

When Jesus Turned Around

When he saw Jesus passing by, he said, "Look, the Lamb of God!" When the two disciples heard him say this, they followed Jesus.  Turning around, Jesus saw them following and asked, "What do you want?" They said, "Rabbi" (which means Teacher), "where are you staying?"  "Come," he replied, "and you will see."  So they went and saw where he was staying, and spent that day with him.  It was about the tenth hour.
John 1:36-39

"What do you want?" was Jesus' first question to the two disciples following Him.  It caught my attention for two reasons: (1) Jesus asked, and (2) Jesus gave a friendly tone which lead to an invitation.  Let me expound on my two points.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

No Religion

If anyone considers himself religious and yet does not keep a tight rein on his tongue, he deceives himself and his religion is worthless.  Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself form being polluted by the world.
- James 1:26-27 -
Photo courtesy: The Writing on the Wall

God desires a relationship with us, not religion.  There are many religions in the world, but there is only one God accepts; that is, to look after orphans and widows and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.  It stresses the importance of relationship.  Religion is man-made, but relationship is from God.  Religion cannot save man; relationship with Jesus can. We can do all religious activities, practices, and traditions faithfully and religiously, and yet we do not keep ourselves in check if we act and speak accordingly.

Friday, July 6, 2012

Seen From a Distance

All these people were still living by faith when they died.  They did not receive the things promised; they only save them and welcomed them from a distance.  And they admitted that they were aliens and strangers on earth.
- Hebrews 11:13 -

Noah. Abraham. Isaac. Jacob. Joseph. Moses. These are the few people mentioned in this chapter.  They are commended by their faith, holding on to the promise God had given them.  When I read the line, "They did not receive the things promised; they only saw them and welcomed them from a distance,"  I remembered mama.  She knew that God gave her a promise that her husband will be saved.  She knew and believed in her heart that God will do as He promised in Acts 16:31 and 1 Cor 7:14.  She had that kind of faith, persistently believing and not doubting that it will come to pass. God promised. Mama believed; she saw it only from afar.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

In Troubled Times, God is There

Photo courtesy: Daily Dwelling

Psalm 77

I pray to you, Lord God,
    and I beg you to listen.
    In days filled with trouble,
    I search for you.
And at night I tirelessly
lift my hands in prayer,
    refusing comfort.
When I think of you,
    I feel restless and weak.
Because of you, Lord God,
    I can’t sleep.
I am restless
    and can’t even talk.
    I think of times gone by,
    of those years long ago.
Each night my mind
    is flooded with questions:
“Have you rejected me forever?
    Won’t you be kind again?
Is this the end of your love
    and your promises?