Monday, August 18, 2014

Be Part of a Miracle

This article, written recently by Gary for a local newspaper, explains in a nutshell why we do what we do ... and explains what we all can be part of - a miracle!

Be Part of a Miracle (From The Enterprise - July 25, 2014)

We read in Mark 16:15, Jesus said to His followers ...

Go everywhere in the world,
and tell the Good News to everyone.

This command is termed "The Great Commission" because Jesus emphasizes this so clearly in each of the first four books of the New Testament. Therefore, since Jesus puts so much importance on this, one would think that we Christians would take it seriously. Yet, in actuality, sharing the Good News of what the eternal Son of God has done for us - entering our world as a man, living a sinless life, revealing His power and His love, giving up His life to pay the penalty of death for our transgressions, and then rising from the dead to conquer death for all mankind - is something most of us don't really do very often.

The Bible even gives us many promises of His presence and His help if we do get up the nerve to share. In fact, Isaiah 55:10-11 uses the comparison of sharing God's Word with a farmer sowing seeds for his crops to emphasize that when we share God's truth, it actually will sprout and grow. We have the promise from this passage that sharing will not be in vain, but will actually accomplish God's purpose in that persons life! Yet, because of it's supernatural aspect, this can be difficult for us to grasp. As a result, we may still shrug off sharing, thinking that it won't do any good, or that others won't listen to what we say anyway.

But this shouldn't dissuade us. In Mark 4:26-27 we read the story of how the farmer scatters seed, and the seed sprouts and grows, but even the farmer does not know how that actually happens.

 It's somewhat of a mystery that God just makes happen. 
Yet we know that all the farmers in this world 
still plant their seed every season. 

So, too, when we share the gospel, God is the one who makes it bear fruit. Therefore, it's not up to us; it's up to God. We can trust Him even though we don't understand it all. In fact, we should marvel that we can be part of the miracle that God can do in someone's life.

In 1973 a 2,000 year-old cache of date palm seeds was discovered on the mountain called Masada in Israel. In 2004, another researcher persuaded those holding this ancient cache of seeds to give him some seeds to try planting them. They gave him just three seeds. Out of those three, one of them actually grew! It actually sprouted and grew after over 2,000 years! (Israel My Glory, Article by Peter Colon, page 31, May/June 2014)

If a date palm seed can last 2,000 years and still sprout and grow, we should be able to believe that God can take a seed of truth that we share with someone, and make it grow at the proper time. Galatians 6:9 says, "And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up." And II Corinthians 9:10: "He will multiply your seed ... and increase the harvest of your righteousness."

Cru (Campus Crusade for Christ) has an encouraging way to look at sharing God's Good News: "It's simply taking the initiative to share Christ in the power of the Holy Spirit, leaving the results to God." In other words, anyone can share Christ.

It's up to God to take that seed of truth that we share
and cause it to sprout and grow in someone's life.

What could we do that would be more fulfilling than that?

(This is a devotional article, written by Gary, as published in The Enterprise, a weekly newspaper in Washington County.)

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