Going through Samaria

But He needed to go through Samaria John 4:4

In Jesus’ day Jews rarely went by way of Samaria. We could speculate that Jesus needed to go through Samaria to avoiding the Jewish leaders or maybe just because it was shorter and he was tired! We don’t know the reason but we can all identify with having to go somewhere that we would prefer to avoid.

Samaria was a bit like the business district we go around so we don’t get stuck in traffic. It could be a job you don’t like or a family commitment that is getting heavier every day. You may have to sit by the bedside of a loved one for whom the doctors have to hope. There could be a surgery or a crushing debt that must be paid looming on your horizon. All of our Samarias are different but the one thing they each have in common is that we must go through them.

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It is comforting to know at those times of trial, temptation and weariness that Jesus doesn’t just command us to keep going, He has gone ahead of us to prepare the way. Jesus had to go through Samaria because Samaria is where he found you and I. Samaria is where He gave us hope. Samaria is where we discovered we could be accepted by God. Samaria is the place Jesus chose to go and He calls for us to go with Him through our own Samaria today.

Greater Things

Jesus said, “You believe because I told you I saw you under the fig tree. You will see greater things than that.”  John 1:50

Believing connects us first to knowing that He knows our hearts. This only recorded conversation between Nathanael and Jesus in the Bible is intriguing both because of its smallness and its bigness. Nathanael was astonished to discover that Jesus knew one of the smallest details of His day. That smallest detail led to the biggest decision of his life!

In the movie “The Santa Clause” with Tim Allen, the elf named Judy says, “Seeing isn’t believing; believing is seeing!” That is one of the best descriptions of the miracle of faith in a believer’s life. At the moment that we believe we begin to see who Jesus for who He truly is. As we begin to see Him as He truly is then we begin to follow where He leads. When we follow where Jesus is leading, then we discover that He is going to some astonishing places!

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Be prepared for astonishing places along the way as you follow Jesus. Buckle your seat belts and hold on tight. He has promised to show us greater things, if we only believe!

 

WWJCA (What would Jesus Care About)

With all the emotions running wild after this election I paused today to ask myself, “What would Jesus care about?”

Here are my favorite four. Let me know if you have any other ideas!

A) Love God with all your heart,mind  soul and strength Mark 12:30

When God becomes the center of who we are we stay in the exact orbit that He has designed. Hurtling aimlessly through space is not freedom it is just wandering alone or as Bob Dylan said, “no direction home.”

B) Love your neighbor Luke 10:27

Once God replaces us on the throne of our life then loving our neighbors gets a lot easier to do. Love is much more than a reasonable action, it becomes a part of our life in Christ. Jesus never had to stop and decide if He could love someone. Jesus Christ simply was moved with compassion because of who He was, not because of who He was with.

C) Take up the Cross and follow Christ

Matthew 10:38 As disciples of Jesus taking our cross was never presented as an option. It is not like in the car showroom where only some things come standard. Following Jesus means going where He went. Our true life is hidden with Christ in God. To discover life’s design means an intimate relationship with the designer: “the fellowship of His suffering”

D) Go and make disciples of all nations Matthew 28:19

When we focus on what Jesus has called us to do we will find that we have a lot less time to fuss about what others are not doing. We can do all things through He who strengthens me, but without Him we can do nothing. So let’s patiently, determinedly and lovingly run the race that God has chosen. The days ahead will be hard and sometimes confusing but He has promised to be with us even to the end of the world. Now is the time for genuinely sharing the love of God.

More about Jesus would I know

More of His love to others show

More of His saving fullness see

More of His love who died for me!

 Eliza Hewitt

Memories and Poems

For followers of this blog you may find this collection of poems and reflections to be a blessing. Included are some of the best liked songs, poems and memories from the last few years on this site as well as some from the past. I pray these will be an encouragement to allow the hands of Christ to heal old wounds, to trust God’s grace through present difficulty and to go away focused with hope in Him for the future!

You can follow this link directly to the page for more information or your can search it out on Amazon: Book number ASIN: B01M3YWSRW

. Be blessed today!

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More than Tears

But Ruth replied, “Don’t ask me to leave you or turn back. Wherever you go I will go, wherever you live I will live. Your people will be my people and your God will be my God. Ruth 1:16

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Ruth and her sister in law both started on the road to Bethlehem together. They were both determined to be faithful to take care of their mother in-law. Both of them kissed her and both shed tears, but Ruth had a faith in God that went far beyond tears.
Yes tears are precious to God and He treasures each one as it falls. But what is more precious than tears is our faith. God waits quietly for our decision. He won’t pressure us to choose His parh or promise that the journey will be easy. But in that moment that our hearts believe and trust Him totally a miracle occurs and our hearts become one with His. We choose Him more than our tears, our personal interests or emotions. We choose a future that begins and ends with Him and that will make all the difference!

Two roads diverged in a wood and I
I took the one less travelled by
And that has made all the difference!

Robert Frost The Road Less traveled

Commit your way to the Lordtrust in him, and he will act. Psalm 37:5

Commit: To put into charge or trust (Entrust) Merriam-Webster

When I was born, my Great-grandmother put a small amount of money into a trust fund for me. It was mine, but I couldn’t use it until I turned eighteen. The money was no longer hers but she had established a control over when I would receive it. She had entrusted it to me…but not yet. Some of us when we pray and “commit” our way to the Lord are doing very much the same thing, however I do not think the Bible definition of the word commit matches Merriam-Webster. We say with our lips that our way is committed to the Lord but we still maintain control over it. We set up guidelines within which we will accept the directing of our paths. God’s idea of commitment is in fact quite different. In the New Testament Jesus called Peter and Andrew, one morning as they were washing their nets at the end of a long night of work. The account is very simple,

And Jesus said to them,“Follow me, and I will make you become fishers of men.” And immediately they left their nets and followed him. Mark 1:17-18

Peter and Andrew left behind with the nets every other option they had in life. They did not put any limitation on the will of God. When we commit our way to the Lord we entirely release to Him the control over the path He has chosen. The key is the second part of the verse “And He will act” One thing we know for certain is that Peter and Andrew saw amazing acts of God in the lives: Waves stilled, bread multiplied, sick healed, dead raised and then their Lord crucified and risen!

What mighty things can you expect from God in your life if you truly commit your way to Him? You will never know the answer until you dare to trust Him, leave your nets and follow Him!

 

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Follow the Leader

Baby ducks with momShe came waddling up as we walked through the park with her entourage scurrying around her. The ducklings probably didn’t know anything about us but they trusted that wherever Mom went it was safe to follow. As long as they stayed under her watchful eye they knew that all would be safe. Their food, their safety, their health and their lives all rely on the mother duck, who will never lead them into danger.

In the same way we are called to follow our leader, Jesus Christ. Not only will He not lead us into danger, He will also never send us anywhere that He doesn’t go as well. Though it may feel to us as if He is far away, our ultimate safety, blessing and spiritual growth don’t depend on us but on Him. We aren’t called to know all the answers but to trust that He does and to stay close to His side.

John 8:12 When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”