In Touch

In the Gospels every miracle that Jesus performed, He is the one that initiates the contact. He is the one that says the healing word. He is the one that makes the healing touch. However there are three instances where Jesus does not make the first contact, but rather is touched by someone first. As we read through the Gospels, there is three distinct people who touch Jesus.

The first people who touched Jesus is actually a group and is found in Mark 5:31 and Luke 8:45. Jesus is making His way through the crowd trying to get to Jarius’ house to heal his daughter. While Jesus was pressing through the crowd, He asked “Who touched my clothes?” The disciples were dumbfounded that Jesus would ask such a question when the crowd was bumping into Him the whole time He was trying to make His way to Jarius’ house. The thing about the crowd is that when they touched, bumped into, or rubbed against Jesus nothing happened. No healing, no signs and wonders, no miracles because they were seeking after their own interests. They weren’t following, seeking after, and touching Jesus in order to have a more intimate relationship with Him. They were more concerned in what Jesus could do for them. So many times we don’t receive our healing, we don’t see any signs and wonders, we don’t see any miracles, even though we might touch Jesus or bump into Him, because we are in it for the wrong reasons. Are you seeking after Jesus in order that you might know Him more intimately or are you seeking after Jesus so that you might get something from Him?

The second person that touched Jesus was the woman with the issue of blood (See Mark 5:25-34 and Luke 8:43-48). This woman had spent all she had and exhausted all of her options going to different doctors trying to receive her healing. Recently, I passed a sign posted at a church that said “Is prayer your first response or your last resort?” I like to change that to “Is Jesus your first response or your last resort?” So many times we are just like this woman, we waste all our time, money, energy, and effort trying to find what we are looking for everywhere else, and right before we give up or quit, we turn to Jesus. No matter what situation, circumstance or problem we go through it does not change the source we go to in order to find our help. Jesus is the source of everything we will ever need. Jesus should be the first one we turn to and not a last ditch effort in order that we might find what we’re looking for. David said it this way “Where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord” (See Psalm 121:1-2). Now the Bible says that this woman had enough faith that she only needed to touch the clothes Jesus was wearing. She didn’t need Jesus to touch her, she didn’t need Jesus to say a healing word, she didn’t even need to touch Jesus, she had such great faith that she believed that if she could just touch what Jesus was touching she would receive her healing. Some of us might need to receive a touch from Jesus in order to receive our healing, others of us might just need to hear Jesus say a healing word, but there are some of us that we just need to touch the very thing that Jesus is coming in contact with in order that we might receive our healing. The Bible says because of this great faith, Jesus realized that power had gone out from Him. I don’t know about you, but I want to have enough faith that when I touch what Jesus is touching the power of God is released in my life. This is why Jesus says “That if two of you shall agree on earth as touching any thing that they shall ask, it shall be done for them of my Father which is in Heaven” (See Matthew 18:19). Are you willing to touch what Jesus touched in order to receive your healing, your miracle, your breakthrough in your life?

Finally, the last person to touch Jesus we find in John 20:17. Mary Magdalene is going to the tomb to see where they had buried Jesus. When she got there, she saw that the stone had been rolled away. She stood outside the tomb crying and then she looked into the tomb trying to find Jesus. She was not self-seeking, she wasn’t looking to get something from Jesus, all she wanted was to see Jesus, to find Him. When she turned around from the tomb, Jesus was standing right there in front of her. She went to embrace Him, but Jesus told her not to touch Him. I believe that because Mary was seeking after Jesus in order to have a more intimate relationship with Him and didn’t just want to touch Him but embrace Him, she would have received so much power and been revealed so much of God’s glory that it might have overtaken her and possibly killed her. I want to reach such a level of love for Jesus and intimacy with Him that receive a small portion of His power, like the woman with the issue of blood, or even just see a glimpse of His glory, like Moses, but that when I embrace Him I would be so consumed that my flesh would die, my spirit would come alive, and I’d be changed forever. Paul tells us that whoever is in Christ, whoever embraces Jesus, whoever touches Jesus, is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come (See 2 Corinthians 5:17). Is that what you’re seeking after? Are you striving for that type of intimate relationship that when you touch Jesus, you’ll never be the same again?

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Recently I’ve been watching a sermon series called “Jesus is the Glory of God” by Judah Smith, Senior Pastor of the City Church. As I was watching, God hit me with this profound statement: Those that seek God’s hand will only see His power, but those that seek God’s face will see His glory.

The children of Israel were only concerned with what God could do for them and weren’t concerned in having a relationship with Him. Therefore, they only saw God’s power, acts, and were given the Ten Commandments. Moses, on the other hand, wasn’t satisfied with just God’s power, acts, and presence, he knew there was more. He wanted to see God’s glory. He wanted that intimacy with God. So many times we get caught up with the power of God and we lose sight of Him and the desire to want to know more, to grow deeper in our love for Him, and to see His glory. The crowds that followed Jesus were only allowed to see and experience the miracles, but the disciples gave up everything they had, paid the price, and sought after more of Jesus thus they were revealed the glory of God.

David mentions many times how he just wants to seek God’s face (See 1 Chronicles 16:11, Psalm 24:6, Psalm 105:4, Psalm 27:8). In fact in Psalm 27:4, David says the one thing that he asks of the Lord and what he seeks is that he would be able to gaze upon the face of God. The verse we all know so well, 2 Chronicles 7:14, says that if God’s people would seek His face then God will hear from Heaven and heal our land. If we really want true healing in our life, in our jobs, in our families, in our country, then we need to stop seeking after God’s hand, his power, the things of the world He could bless us with and start seeking His face, hunger and thirst for His glory. Jesus said it this way “But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well” (See Matthew 6:33). The writer of Hebrews tells us that Jesus is the brightness of God’s glory and the express image of God’s person (See Hebrews 1:1-4). In other words, if we have Jesus, the glory of God, we have everything we ever need. There’s no more looking, no more searching, no more seeking after anything else. Jesus is more than enough (See Ephesians 3:14-19). Judah Smith said “The Bible culminates that Jesus is more than enough, and if you have Jesus you have everything you need.”

Paul ends with this statement in 2 Corinthians 3 “But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord.” In other words, Jesus came to reveal to us the glory of God and we are being changed into that same essence through the Spirit. Behold Jesus and you will be transformed. Our life should not pass by from time to time, place to place, season to season, job to job, or person to person, but from glory to glory.

The scariest verse in the Bible is when the people come up to Jesus and tell Him how they have done so many amazing miracles, signs, and wonders and Jesus tells them “depart from Me, I never knew you” (See Matthew 7:21-23). They were so wrapped up in seeking after God’s power that they missed out on seeking after God’s face, seeing His glory, and having a personal relationship with Jesus.

So do you serve a vending machine God? Are you only concerned with seeing God’s power move in your life? Or do you want something more? Are you seeking God’s face? Are you seeing His glory? Are you peering at Jesus? Because there, and only there, is where you will find all that you will ever need and much more.

The Power, The Pressure, The Promise

I was reading through 2 Corinthians 4 and God revealed to me something I’ve never seen before. There are three P-words mentioned in this passage of scripture that I believe we can’t do without as we live this life. They are power, pressure, and promise.

The power we have to live this life abundantly, the way Jesus purposed and gave His life for, comes from the Spirit of God. Verse seven of 2 Corinthians 4 says that we have this treasure inside of us so that the excellency of power may be of God and not of us. This treasure inside of us that Paul is talking about is the Spirit of God. Paul also writes that God gave us a Spirit of power (See 2 Timothy 1:7). Paul goes on to tell us that God can do exceedingly abundantly above all we can ask or think, according to the power that is at work in us (See Ephesians 3:20). This is why Jesus said greater things we will do and that greater is He who is inside of us. I believe most of us fail to tap into this power source, and thus, live mediocre lives, just surviving, barely making it by, and never see God move mightily on our behalf. If we could only realize how great, mighty, amazing, and awesome the power is that is inside of us, we would never go another day without it. Paul tells us that the same power that raised Jesus from the dead lives in us (See Romans 8:11). Hillsong United sings a song called “You Are Here” that says the same power that conquered the grave lives in me, your love that rescued the world lives in me. Wow! Go live through that power today.

Paul writes further on in 2 Corinthians 4 that we are hard pressed on every side but not crushed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed (See 2 Corinthians 4:8-9). Without pressure, the lump of clay is never molded into the shape it’s suppose to be. If you apply a certain amount of pressure to the water flowing from a garden hose, the water will shoot out further than it ever did. The amount of pressure that is applied to our life is necessary in order for us to be shaped into the purpose God has for us and to go further than we have ever gone before. Jesus says that God prunes us in order that we might produce more fruit (See John 15:2). God is going to apply pressure and is going to cut some things away in our lives that we might continue to grow and be molded into our greatest potential. So don’t resist the pressure and quit holding onto the things that God wants to cut away because you are preventing yourself, holding yourself back, and stopping the blessing, gift, and greatness God has for your life.

Finally Paul says in verse 17 of 2 Corinthians 4 that our light and momentary affliction is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory. We have a promise that what we are going through is working for us to achieve a much better and lasting life that we could ever imagine. It is never as hard as we think it is, it is never as long as we seem it is going to be, and it is always working for us in order that we may reach our calling, purpose, and potential. Paul says for this very reason we do not lose heart (See 2 Corinthians 4:1,16). Jesus said it this way “In this world you will have trouble: but don’t lose heart; I have overcome the world” (See John 16:33).

So take heart, don’t quit, don’t give up because you have the power, the pressure of this life is working for you, and nothing compares to the promise you have in Jesus.

One Thing Remains

If you are familiar with wrestling, then you know that they have an event called the Royal Rumble. A Royal Rumble is when a certain amount of wrestlers start in the ring to begin with, and when one of them is thrown out of the ring, another wrestler enters from backstage. This goes on until all the wrestlers from backstage have entered the ring and there is one wrestler left standing at the end. Paul writes that after all is said and done, there is three things that remain: faith, hope and love; the greatest being love (See 1 Corinthians 13:13). Lets break down each on of these three individually.

Elevation Worship has a song called “Give Me Faith.” If you haven’t heard it, you should because it will really increase your faith. The word faith is mentioned 365 times in the Bible. One time for each day of the year. There is an entire chapter of the Bible, Hebrews 11 called the faith chapter or hall of faith, dedicated to faith. This chapter tells us that without faith it is impossible to please God (See Hebrews 11:6). Every time Jesus healed someone, He told them that their faith had made them whole. We are supposed to walk by faith and not by what we see. The prophet Habakkuk tells us that the righteous will live by faith (See Habakkuk 2:4). Jesus said that everything is possible for those who have faith (See Mark 9:23). According to Hebrews faith is believing and hoping in what we can’t see (See Hebrews 11:1). Paul writes that we should fix our eyes not on what is seen but what is unseen because what is seen in temporal but what is unseen is eternal (See 2 Corinthians 4:18). So don’t worry about what you see around you because it won’t last. Keep believing for what you can’t yet see and never let go of your faith.

Third Day has a song called “My Hope is You” based on Psalm 25:1-5 where David says his hope is in the Lord and no one who puts their hope in the Lord will ever be put to shame. The prophet Isaiah writes that whoever hopes in the Lord will renew their strength, soar like an eagle, run and not get tired, and walk and don’t lag behind or faint (See Isaiah 40:31). In other words, if you are feeling weak and looking for strength, if you want to soar above your problems and improve your vision, if you want to run this race of life to win, and if you want to not get left behind, then you need to put your hope and trust in the Lord. Psalm 20:7 says that some trust in chariots and some trust in horses, but we trust in the name of the Lord our God. Quit putting your hope and trust in people, in your job, in your education, in your talents, or in your possessions and place it God’s hands where He’ll never let go of you.

Love conquers all fear (See 1 John 4:18). Love covers all sin (See 1 Peter 4:8). God loved so He gave (See John 3:16). God is love (See 1 John 4:8,16). God loved us first (See 1 John 4:19). Nothing can separate us from God’s love (See Romans 8:38-39). Love endures forever (See Psalm 136). Love never gives up. Love cares more for others. Love doesn’t want what it doesn’t have. Love doesn’t boast. Love does not dishonor others. Love is not self-seeking. Love is not easily angered. Love keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. Love always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails (See 1 Corinthians 13:4-8).  I’ll close with the lyrics from the song called “One Thing Remains” by Jesus Culture.

Higher than the mountains that I face
Stronger than the power of the grave
Constant through the trial and the change
One thing remains
One thing remains

Your love never fails it never gives up it never runs out on me

On and one and on and on it goes
It overwhelms and satisfies my soul
And I never ever have to be afraid
One thing remains

In death and in life I’m confident and covered by the power of your great love
My debt is paid there’s nothing that can separate my heart from your great love

Connect the Dots

Do you remember growing up the coloring books where you had to connect the dots first before you could see the whole picture? Our life is kind of like that coloring book. Each next step that God tells us to take is like each line connecting the dots together. Though we can’t see how each step fits into our life or even understand at the time why God is asking us to take that next step, when we are finished connecting the dots and taking each step we look back and see the complete picture. God can already see the whole picture of our life so when He tells us to take that particular next step, He is connecting the necessary dots in our life that will eventually complete the purpose and calling He has for each and everyone of us.

Recently God has shown me in His Word a few of the dots that He has connected. Being a math guy, I’m always thinking, trying to find solutions to problems, figure out the necessary steps to take, and discover a formula where I can insert life’s variables and everything will all work out just fine. Now what I’m about to share with you is not a 7 step program to ultimate success in life, but I do think that if you connect these dots in life, they will help you along the way.

David says that he has hidden God’s Word in his heart that he might not sin against God (See Psalm 119:11). Now why is it so important to study the Word, memorize the Word, meditate on the Word, and get it rooted deep in our hearts? I’m glad you asked. I love what Perry Noble, Senior Pastor of NewSpring Church, said “The best commentary on the Bible is the Bible.” So what does the Bible say on this.

Solomon, David’s son, said that above all, more important than anything else, greater than all the other things you’re striving for, guard your heart for out of it flows the issues of life (See Proverbs 4:23). If you don’t like what you’re seeing in life, watch what you allow or are putting in your heart. Watch what you see, watch what you hear, and watch what you read cause those are three gates that allow things to enter into your heart.

So how do we guard our hearts? Paul writes that the peace of God which transcends all understanding will guard our hearts and our minds in Christ (See Philippians 4:7). How many people do you know in this world have peace in their lives? Not many at all. How do we get this peace that Paul talks about?

Isaiah says that whoever’s mind is steadfast, locked in, focussed on, concentrated on God, He will keep that person in perfect peace (See Isaiah 26:3). This is why Paul tells us to have the mind of Christ and to be transformed by the renewing of our minds (See Colossians 3:1-3 and Romans 12:1). As long as your in Christ, have the mind of Christ, God will keep you in perfect peace.

Lastly I’ll end with one of my favorite scriptures. Proverbs 3:5-6 says trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding, in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will direct your paths. In other words, believe whole heartedly in God, don’t try to understand everything or believe in your’s or other’s knowledge, wisdom, or intellect, in everything seek God first, take your circumstances, situations, problems to Him, give Him all the glory, and He will connect the dots of the picture, put the pieces of the puzzle together, guide you into taking the proper steps in life to reach your full potential, fulfill your calling in life, and complete the purpose God has created you for.

PopTart Faith

PopTarts, the breakfast of champions. Just put it in the toaster and in less than a minute later, you got a pastry full of delicious goodness. Did you know that they actually have directions on how to properly toast your PopTarts? As if it weren’t easy enough. Take out of the package, put in toaster, and toast. There is in fact two sets of PopTart directions. One for the toaster and one for the microwave. If the toaster isn’t fast enough for you, you can put your PopTart in the microwave on high for ten seconds. Ten seconds! Who’s schedule is so busy that they need to have breakfast ready in ten seconds? If you have reached that point, I think it might be time for you to loosen up on the busyness of life.

We live in a generation today that we have to have everything  in an instant. We have instant messaging, instant coffee, instant oatmeal, instant gratification, instant access to the internet, instant email, and the list goes on. Sometimes our faith works like that. We only believe for a moment and if it doesn’t happen, we give up. Paul tells us to not grow weary in well-doing for in due season we will reap if we don’t give up (See Galatians 6:9). Now I’m not saying that God can’t move miraculously on your behalf in an instance, He can and sometimes He will, but for the most part faith is a process and not an instance.

The crowds that followed Jesus, after seeing all the miracles that He had performed, started to think that everything was going to happen in a moment’s time. Jesus, however saw this, so He started to tell them a parable about how faith most of the time is a process (See Luke 19:11-27). The parable is about a man who gives ten of his servants three months’ wages and tells them to put the money to work, do business, until he comes back. When the man returned, he called the ten servants to him to see what they had done in the process of working what they had been given. The servants that were faithful were given authority over cities, but the servant that was not faithful during the process what he had been given was taken away from him. If you are not faithful in the process, then what you have will be taken away from you. There is a process and if you can keep just as much faith in the process as in the moment, you will be rewarded. God will change your position. You will go from weakness to a position of strength. Paul said it this way “For when I am weak, then I am strong.” (See 2 Corinthians 12:9-10)

Bishop T.D. Jakes, Senior Pastor of the Potter’s House, said “We don’t want to hear about process because we want everything to be instantaneous. Remember, the process always comes before the promotion.” In other words, in order to get the promotion, get the reward, be given more authority, you must first be faithful through the process. James 1:2-4 informs us that there is a process, but when it is finished; we will be mature, complete and lacking nothing.

So if you are getting tired of believing, don’t quit. If you are losing hope, keep holding on. If you are about to fall, keep standing. Let your faith arise. If you could only see how close you are to the end of the process, you wouldn’t be thinking of giving up. Be like Paul, who remained faithful through the process, and was able to say at the end of his life “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.” (See 2 Timothy 4:7)

Talking About Practice

I’ll never forget seeing on SportsCenter this particular interview of Allen Iverson, guard for the Philadelphia 76er’s. For some reason or the other Iverson had been skipping out on team practices. So during the interview one of the sports writers questioned him on it. His response was priceless. He said “Practice? We’re talkin’ about practice. Not a game, but practice.” If you have never seen the video of this interview, I suggest going on YouTube and checking it out. Recently this got me to thinking about something.

Many times as Christians that too seems to be our response. We have fallen into the pattern that we show up on Sunday for the game, but then Monday through Saturday we skip out on all the practices. We have to remember that we are the church and not some building that we meet together in on Sundays. Jesus said it this way “Why do you call me Lord but then don’t do what I said.” (See Luke 6:46) In other words, you can’t just listen to the word preached on Sunday during church and then the rest of the week not put it into practice. James 1:22 says that we deceive ourselves if we are just hearers and not doers.

This would be like the quarterback of your favorite football team missing all the practices during the week, not reading the playbook, and not getting together for film sessions with the rest of the team. How many of you think that he would have much success during the game on Sunday? No one. Then why do we think the same thing would bring success in our walk with Christ? Paul told Timothy to study to show yourself approved, a workman that needs not to be ashamed, who rightfully divides the word of truth (See 2 Timothy 2:15). Paul also says to work out your own salvation (See Philippians 2:12) and Peter tells us like a newborn baby crave spiritual milk in order for us to grow up in our salvation (See 1 Peter 2:2). We can’t get any better, grow in our faith, or get further along in our walk with Christ by just playing in the game. We got to participate in the practices.

So yes I’m talkin’ about practice. Quit just showing up for the game on Sunday. Get in the trenches with the rest of the team at the practices from Monday to Saturday. James tells us that faith produces perseverance and when perseverance finishes it’s work; you will be complete, lacking nothing (See James 1:2-4). In other words, “Practice makes perfect.”

Fought, Finished, Faith

The Apostle Paul comes to the end of his life and he writes this to his student Timothy “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.” (See 2 Timothy 4:7) When I read this those three words stood out to me: fought, finished, faith. I started to break down each word individually and this is what I discovered.

1) Fought

Paul tells Timothy earlier to fight the good fight of faith (See 1 Timothy 6:12). In order for us to do this, we must put on the full armor of God as Paul instructs the church in Ephesus to do in Ephesians 6:10. As we look through the armor we find that all of the pieces are used for protection or defense except one. The only weapon that is used for offense is the sword of the Spirit which is the Word of God. So you can have salvation, faith, truth, peace, and righteousness, but without the Word, all you are going to be able to do is play defense. I don’t know about you but I played baseball, and though I liked playing defense, I couldn’t wait until it was my turn to bat because I loved going on offense. Offense is the only way to score and the last time I checked the team that scores the most wins. Perry Noble, Senior Pastor of NewSpring Church, challenged us a few weeks ago to take the ball and run up the score against the enemy. The only way we are going to be able to do that is if we hide the Word of God in our heart. When Jesus was tempted by Satan in the wilderness, He fought back by saying “It is written.” Read the word, know it, study it, dive into it, quit playing defense, and start advancing the ball for the Kingdom of God.

2) Finished

God never starts anything He’s not planning on finishing and neither should we (See Philippians 1:6). The last three words that Jesus said as He was hanging on the cross was “It is finished.” (See John 19:30) The truly amazing thing about this statement is that Jesus said it before He rose again. He declared victory before the work had been done. This is the greatest example of how we should approach life. My former boss had a quote on his desk that I’ll never forget and this is what it said “What would you attempt if you knew you could not fail.” We should be attacking life with this mindset because it’s already finished we just have to walk in it. Look in the Word. God always refers to us in past tense. Your calling, your cause, and your purpose have already been completed by God. Walk in that victory today.

3) Faith

Hebrews 11:1 gives us the definition of faith. It says “Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.” In other words, when what you see doesn’t lineup with what you know is true in God’s Word, you keep believing that what you don’t see will soon become what you see. I heard a pastor give this personal translation of this verse “It is through faith where the very essence of what you want in life; according to God’s will and plan, even though it is no where in sight, in your heart it becomes a reality.” You could end up losing everything in this life, but as long as you still have faith, you will be able to get it all back. The author of Hebrews goes on to say however without faith it is impossible to please God (See Hebrews 11:6). Paul tells us in 1 Corinthians 13:13, that after everything is said and done, faith is one of three things that remains. So no matter what the world throws your way, remember that what God put inside of you is greater than anything the enemy can put around you, and hold on tight to your faith because we have a kingdom that cannot be shaken.

Which Person Are You?

When I was looking through my studies, I ran across three situations where certain people chose to stand out and certain people chose not to. They challenged me to rethink about what person I am and I hope they do the same for you.

In 1 Samuel 13:22 we are told that when it came time for battle none of the soldiers had a sword or a spear. The only two people who had a sword was Saul and Jonathan. Now Saul looked at what he had and not only did he hold himself back from doing anything with it but he also kept the whole army back from advancing. Jonathan, on the other hand, took what he had and used it to kill twenty men. Not only did Jonathan use what he had, but he also took his armor bearer along with him and the armor bearer ended up following behind Jonathan killing men too. Are you using what God has given you? Are you helping develop the people around you or are you keeping them back from reaching their full potential? Be like Jonathan. Make sure people are better off for being associated with you.

The second group of people we find when Jesus is going around healing people. Jesus was traveling up to Jerusalem for a feast. When He got to Jerusalem, He approaches a man who had been lying by this healing pool for thirty-eight years. Jesus asks the man if he wanted to be healed from his condition (See John 5:1-6). Now in Mark 10:46-52, we see the story of Blind Bartimaeus. Jesus and his disciples are in Jericho and are about to leave the city. Bartimaeus had been sitting by the roadside begging and when He heard that Jesus was passing by, he began to shout out to Him. Many people were telling him to shut up, but Bartimaeus shouted louder and even more than before. Jesus stops what He’s doing, calls Bartimaeus over, and asks him what he wanted Jesus to do for him. Are you waiting on Jesus to take notice of you or are you going to do everything to get His attention? Is Jesus asking you if you really want to be healed, be set free, want you’re dreams to come true or is He writing you a blank check? When Jesus asks you a question or tells you to do something, do you give Him excuses or do you give Him answers? Don’t be like the man at the pool. Be like Bartimaeus and do what my brother and I like to say to each other “Get after it!”

Lastly I found two different instances of people in a boat. The first is when Jonah is running away from God. He gets into a boat going toward Tarsus. All of sudden a severe storm hits and in order for the ship and the crew to be saved, they have to throw Jonah overboard (See Jonah 1). The second is found in Acts 27:13-44. Here we find Paul on a ship sailing for Rome. All of a sudden, the ship is caught in a storm. Because of Paul’s instructions to the crew, the ship was lost but everyone on the ship made it to land safely. Are people better off with you in their boat or not in their boat? Be like Paul. Be the one who saves the people and not the one who is the reason why they are caught up in a storm in the first place.

I heard a saying that has stuck with me “Some people watch things happen, other people make things happen, and others wonder what the heck just happened.” So which one are you? Are you using what you have? Are people advancing because they are with you? Is Jesus asking you if you really want it or is He writing you a blank check? Do you give answers or excuses? And are people better off with you in the boat or out of the boat? You can wonder “what if” or you can make history. Get after it and be the difference today!

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