Archive for March, 2016

March 21, 2016

If He’s Going With You…

by Lester Young

So here’s the setting: Jairus, the man in charge of the synagogue, had a twelve-year-old daughter who was very sick – so sick, in fact, that she was on the verge of dying at any moment. Being a local leader, he was well aware of Jesus and His reputation as a miracle-worker (John 3:2). When he heard that Jesus was in the area, he quickly went out to Him, fell at His feet and earnestly requested that He come home with him and lay hands on his ailing child to heal her. Mark 5:24 gives us the Lord’s response: “And [He] went with him.”

Now we all know what happened next: A woman with an issue of blood had the unmitigated gall to show up and receive her healing, thereby stopping the entire procession in its tracks at the absolute most inopportune time – as far as Jairus was concerned, anyway; because his daughter died before they could get to her (Mark 5:25-35).

But while those developments are certainly central – and crucial – to the narrative, I think we should spend a little more time actually considering the Lord’s response that immediately preceded them: “And [Jesus] went with him.” Jairus began the interaction by pleading with the Lord to lay hands on his daughter so she would get well. However, in order to do that, Jairus needed Jesus to go with him to his house. (Now I stress that Jairus “needed” the Lord to be physically present with his daughter in order to heal her because that’s the level of faith he was operating from. Recall the Roman centurion who came to Jesus to ask Him to heal his young servant: The Lord highly praised that man’s faith because he didn’t require – or even feel worthy of – Jesus’ presence anywhere near his house. He asked the Lord to just “speak the word only, and my servant shall be healed” [Matthew 8:8]. And Jesus’ reply to him was, “Go your way; and as you have believed, so be it done unto you” [Matthew 8:13]. That being said, individual faith levels aren’t the real issue here, because God is willing to meet each of us wherever our own faith level is, as long as we’re willing to put that we’ve got to use [Mark 9:23-24; Luke 17:5-10].)

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March 15, 2016

A Man of Faith, a Son of God

by Lester Young

“Now when Jesus saw a crowd, He gave orders to go over to the other side [of the sea]. … And when He got into the boat, His disciples followed Him. And behold, there arose a great storm on the sea, so that the boat was being swamped by the waves; but [Jesus] was asleep. And they went and woke Him, saying, ‘Save us, Lord; we are perishing!’ And He said to them, ‘Why are you afraid, O you of little faith?’ Then He rose and rebuked the winds and the sea, and there was a great calm. And the men marveled, saying, ‘What sort of man is this, that even winds and sea obey Him?'” (Matthew 8:18, 23-27, English Standard Version)

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March 7, 2016

Use Your Faith with Purpose!

by Lester Young

From the Just the GOOD News! archives…

How do you use your faith? Being brutally honest, how do you consider it: as a heavy-handed, blunt-force-trauma-inducing club you only pull out when all your own best efforts have come to naught and you’re going under for the third time; or as a razor-sharp, finely-balanced precision instrument meant to be wielded by a highly-trained expert in his or her field? I think it’s pretty easy to deduce that if I thought the correct answer was that first choice, I wouldn’t have anything to write about today, so let’s just go with the second one, shall we?

We can all probably agree that where tools are concerned, the more refined, highly-calibrated and tolerance-sensitive an instrument is, the more particular its intended use turns out to be. In other words, it can’t be used just any ole way you please. It’s most effective – and, in many cases, is only effective – when used at the right time, in the right circumstances and according to the right application procedures (i.e., the instructions) for a specific purpose.

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