Sunday, August 25, 2013

Be Brave and Simply Believe

Mark 10:15
I tell you the truth, anyone who doesn't receive the Kingdom of God like a child will never enter it.

Research from Samaritan’s Purse shows that 64% of Christians accept Christ before age 18.  The majority accept Christ as a child.  Jesus points out how important children are to Him repeatedly.  Children aren’t afraid to ask for what they want.  They do so without any pretense, and they believe they’re going to get it because they have confidence that their every need is going to be met.
Jesus is giving us a clue in this verse not to let the world destroy our faith.  We tend to let rules and religion get in the way of having faith like a child.  When we allow, fear and worry to take over, that is an act of pride. It’s like saying, “Hey, God, I got this one.  You sit back.”  In contrast, God wants us to cast our cares on Him as an act of humility, understanding that He is in control.  It is only as we become adults that we lose the ability to believe like a child.  What happens:
·         Do we become too educated to believe the unseen?
·         Do we become too sophisticated to embrace the miraculous?
·         Do we become too hardened to love?
·         Do we become too scared to hope?
·         Do we become too sinful to acknowledge grace?
·         Do we become too worldly to accept free gifts?
Let’s look at Mark 5:25-34. Note the faith of this woman and Jesus' response to her.
A woman in the crowd had suffered for twelve years with constant bleeding.  She had suffered a great deal from many doctors, and over the years she had spent everything she had to pay them, but she had gotten no better.  In fact, she had gotten worse. She had heard about Jesus, so she came up behind Him through the crowd and touched His robe.  For she thought to herself,” If I can just touch the hem of His robe, I will be healed.”  Immediately, the bleeding stopped, and she could feel in her body that she had been healed of her terrible condition.  Jesus realized at one that healing power had gone out of Him, so He turned around in the crowd and asked ,” Who touched my robe?”  His disciples said to Him, ‘Look at this crowd pressing around You.  How can you ask, “Who touched me?”   But He kept on looking to see who had done it.  Then the frightened woman, trembling at the realization of what had happened to her, came and fell to her knees in front of Him and told Him what she had done.  And He said to her, “Daughter, your faith has made you well.  Go in peace.  Your suffering is over.”
This woman knew that if she could just touch the hem of His robe that she would be healed.  She had to be brave enough to fight through the crowd to get near Him, and she had to be brave enough to speak up when Jesus asked who had touched Him.  She did it!  She simply believed that He would heal her, so she took that risk, and what was His response?  He wasn’t bothered or annoyed.  He was pleased with her and told her that she was healed because of her FAITH.  She simply believed!
I encourage you to:
Trust-  What’s the worst thing that can happen if we just trust that God will do what He says?  Children believe what their fathers tell them.  They don’t argue with him or try to prove him wrong.  We should be the same way with God.  He is our Father.  Believe!
Praise-  Children love their parents and praise them without even thinking about it.  God deserves our praise in every circumstance because He knows the end of the story.  Believe!
Explore-Remember being unafraid when you were a child?  Kids see new experiences as adventures.  Be brave and take a new journey with Him.  Believe!
Forgive-How many children do you know that hold grudges?  Read books, see counselors, join support groups, cry..whatever it takes to loosen the bondage of a grudge.  Ask God to help you let go of the pain.  Believe!
Ask-    Pour out your heart’s desire to God.  Do it over and over and over.  We let the adult in us rationalize ourselves out of coming to our Father because we think that what we want to pray about isn’t as important as so many other prayers going up for other things such as cancer, or job loss or any other number of things.  The truth is if it matters to you, it matters to God.  He cares about every little thing that you care about.  Don’t let someone tell you that what you’re praying about isn’t important and it will just all work out.  He cares!  Believe! 
Passages to Ponder:
Matthew 7:7-8 Keep on asking, and you will receive what you ask for.  Keep on seeking, and you will find.  Keep on knocking and the door will be opened to you.  For everyone who asks, receives.  Everyone who seeks, finds.  And to everyone who knocks, the door will be opened.
Psalm 116:6- The Lord protects those of childlike faith; I was facing death and He saved me.
Mark 9:23- “What do you mean, ‘If I can’?”, Jesus asked.  “Anything is possible if a person believes.”
Contributors:  Karen Bromby, Kathy Derda, Kim McClure and Kristy Tolley


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