The Longest Verse

Some say He wept because of their unbelief. Some say He wept only because He saw them weeping. Some think the Son of God could have never wept as a human because He knew the beginning from the end. Some simply shrug and say it didn’t matter because in just eight short verses He cried out in a loud voice and called Lazarus out from the grave.

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But can anyone really know the depth of the heart of Jesus of Nazareth? Can anyone see the limits of His compassion as He could see the depth of our need? To begin to understand why God’s Son weeps may take a lifetime of heartbreaks to begin to understand. To share in the sorrow of Jesus our Lord is not anything that can be explained or shared in just the sound of those two brief words:

 

Jesus Wept- The Longest verse in the Bible

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Poured Out

I am poured out like water and all my bones are out of joint. My heart is like wax it is melted in the midst of my bowels. Psalm 22:14

As a teen ager I always loved the Christmas presents I got from my stepmother. She bought me beautiful expensive clothes. But as a loving reminder she would leave the price tag on! She didn’t mind spending the money but she wanted to be sure that I treated her gifts other special care!

When we are singing It is well with my soul we should always remember the cost of that message. In the garden His soul was sorrowful unto death. On the cross He was poured out like water. When the spear pierced His side the last drop of the lifeblood of Jesus flowed down to the ground. When we always remember the price we will always treasure the gift. 

The Finish Line

When Jesus had received the sour wine, he said, “It is finished,” and he bowed his head and gave up his spirit. John 19:30

Of the four gospel writers only John records these words. This last intimate communication which John overhears is the final prayer from Jesus to His Father. From the first cry of Jesus in Bethlehem’s manger to His final pain filled words on the cross Jesus had been on a mission. His mission was to seek and save what had been lost (You and Me). Now the healing, the praying, the fasting, the temptations, the teachings, the conflicts and the miracles of Jesus’ earthly ministry are finished. Every disciple who Jesus had called had been commissioned, every earthly relationship fulfilled, every suffering endured and He is ready to return to the place which He left at the right hand of God.

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And it is most amazing to me that at that last moment, and with those final words, “It is finished,” that our own new life begins. Jesus has finished his race. Jesus has run carrying the torch of the light of heaven. As Jesus breathed out his last He passed to John, to His mother Mary and even to all of us who hear His words today that same torch to us to begin to run our own race. Some of us will run for miles and some only one short lap. Each of us has a different race marked out for us in this new year ahead, but we must start at the cross where Jesus finished His course and where we begin ours!

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

To Truly Live

For me to live is Christ and to die is gain Philippians 1:21

Am I completely satisfied with Christ alone?  When we are young we need to please someone. There is always one person’s opinion of our life that we value most. For some of us that is our Mom or Dad. Some idolize an older brother or a friend. But as a Christian really only God’s opinion matters. He is our true life but has that been our reality today? 

Am I willing to surrender anything He asks? Once I was singing “I surrender all” during my nursing home ministry. At the end of the song one lady asked me, “what have you surrendered?” Her question cut right to my heart. What is Christ asking for me to give 100 percent to Him right now? 
Am I ready to go anywhere He asks? Many times we pray for God to open a door. But what we truly have in mind is something that we have wanted on the other side. But if God opens a door and doesn’t tell us much about where it leads are we willing to push it wide open? Will we eagerly press forward just because we trust He knows best? 

One terrible evening our Lord Jesus faced exactly these same three decisions. Did the Father’s opinion matter more than his own? Was he willing to surrender all he had? Would he go anywhere God asked? The open door before our Lord was a stone door ready to be rolled shut once he had entered. Christ prayed till  sweat fell like drops of blood then he decided that for him to truly live was to do the Father’s will and for him to die was truly gain!