Jesus Appears to His Disciples

John 20c.png

On the evening of that first day of the week, when the disciples were together, with the doors locked for fear of the Jewish leaders, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you!” After he said this he showed them his hands and side. The disciples were overjoyed when they saw the Lord. Again Jesus said, “Peace be with you!: As the Father has sent me, I am sending you. And with that he breathed on them and said, “Received the Holy Spirit.                             John 20:19-22

On the first day of the week, the Risen Jesus appeared to His disciples. They were heartbroken, in low spirits, and afraid of the Roman authorities. The disciples must have been overjoyed at Jesus’ appearance. Amid their indescribable heartache, the living Jesus appeared to comfort them in their sorrow. His appearance also coincided with a time when the disciples lived in great fear. They didn’t want the godless world to witness their raw grief and sorrow for the loss of their beloved Master.

Jesus appeared when His disciples were at a point where deep sense of despair threatened to overwhelm them. There were countless questions in their hearts that cried out for answers: Why? Why did He have to suffer so? Why did He have to die so brutally? And in the meantime doubt was eating away their hearts. But now, with Jesus there, everything was good again. “peace be with you!” There are times in each of our lives when we are threatened by despair and doubt, but in the presence of Jesus there is rest and peace. The disciples were together when Jesus appeared to them. It is comforting when like-minded people are together to share their sorrow or doubt. It is called the fellowship of believers. Christ comforts them with the words, “Peace be with you.”

The words of Donald Bloesch: Our peace and confidence are to be found not in our empirical holiness, not in our progress toward perfection but in the alien righteousness of Jesus Christ that covers our sinfulness and alone makes us acceptable before a holy God.

Grace and Peace to You My Friends

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“Here Is Your Son”

 

 

John 19

  Near the cross of Jesus stood his mother, his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene. When Jesus saw his mother there, and the disciple whom he loved, standing nearby he said to her, “Woman here is your son, “ and to the disciple, “Here is your mother.” From that time on, the disciple took her into his home.      John 19:25-27

Our Scripture today  illustrates love born of the sincere heart of a child. Jesus was truly God but also truly human, yet without sin. He knew how much Mary had to suffer. Only love allows one to understand the suffering of another. The love of Christ always burnt brightly, for the entire sinful world, but also is tenderness for His only family and especially for his mother. Christ’s last command concerned his mother. He forgot himself, his own needs, his own sorrow. Human love was an important priority in Jesus’ life. In his dying hour and in his sorrow, he took care of his mother. If anyone dare say that they are taking care of their parents, let them look up at the cross on Golgotha and remember Jesus’ example. Jesus was never more thankful, tender and sensitive than at that moment. He loved his own until the very end. Jesus had already saved the man on the cross next to him, he had already prayed for his enemies, but he did not forget his mother! Human bonds bring responsibilities, responsibilities that remain even after our death. Christ’s suffering and death make us very aware of this. And so on the cross on Golgotha connects the two richest words on earth: mother and Jesus!

 

 

Grace and Peace to You My Friens

Jesus In Gethsemane

Matthew 26   Then Jesus went with his disciples to a place called Gethsemane, and he said to them, “Sit here while I go over there and pray.” He took Peter and the two sons of Zebedee along with him, and he began to be sorrowful and troubled. Then he said to them, “My soul is overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death. Stay here and keep watch with me.”

                                                                       Matthew 26:36-38

Gethsemane! How charged with holy perceptions, this name is to the believer! Today we come to a stop at Via Dolorosa-Christ’s road of sorrow. Gethsemane means “olive press.” Cedron, and move when we cross the bridge and move on into the shadows of the olive trees. Let us take off our shoes and bow our heads, for Jesus was here He was to wrestle in prayer with God. Gethsemane symbolizes the crushing weight Jesus carried on the cross. Christ prayed His high priest prayer for others, then He prayed for God to equip Him for His massive offering; to make the impossible possible, to bear the unbearable.

Is this the only way to save the world? asked our Savior. “It is not possible to find another way? Earlier, Satan showed Jesus the other, easier way. During Christ’s temptation in the desert, Satan said, “I will give it all to You, if You will only bow down and worship me.” (Matthew 4:9) Jesus didn’t want to take the easier way without God’s approval. Here in Gethsemane it was not Jesus’ body that was crucified, but His will. Our Lord placed His wishes and desires on the Father’s altar. Although the cup of suffering made Him shudder, He still accepted it from the Father’s hand. He let His will become His Father’s. He bowed in obedience and carried the burden of the world to Golgotha.

Grace and Peace to You My Friends

Sorrow Becomes Joy

 

 

 

 

John 16a

Jesus went on to say, “In a little while you will see me no more, and then after a little while you will see me.” At this, some of his disciples said to one another, “What does he mean by saying, “In a little while you will see me no more, and then after a little while you will see me, and ‘Because I am going to the Father? “What does he mean by a little while? We don’t understand what he is saying.”

Jesus was looking beyond the present century to the new period that would come. He used an image that was deeply rooted in the Jewish mind. they believed that all time was divided into two parts, the present time and the time to come. The present was altogether bad and subject to damnation. The time that would be the Golden Age-the time of God. The time in between was called the time of the Messiah.

Jesus knew the Scriptures and He knew about these images, he said to his disciples, “I am leaving you now, but I will come back when My kingdom comes and I start to rule. Before this, however, you will have to suffer hard times.” Jesus went ahead to outline all that the Christian would have to endure. There would be times when Christians would experience sorrow, but their sorrow would be changed to joy. And the day would come for a turnabout. The world’s reckless joy would change to sorrow, and the Christians’ apparent sorrow would change to hoy. Christians should always remember  this when their faith is costing them.

There are two exceptional things about Christian joy: First, it can never be taken away because it is rooted in God. For this reason, this joy will be complete, while there is always something missing in the pleasure the world knows. Second, the sorrow that went before Christian joy is forgotten like a mother forgets labor pains, like the martyr forgets their suffering in the glory of heaven.

Grace and Peace to You My Friends

 

Comfort One Another

2 Corinthians 1a.jpgThe Apostle Paul wrote in 2 Corinthians the following letter to the church in Corinth to tell them how pleased he was that the people were sorry for the way they had acted and that they were now trying to live the way God wanted them to. He also defended himself against the accusations, being made by false teachers. Paul tells us in Chapter 1-3-7 Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God. For just as we share abundantly in the sufferings of Christ, so also our comfort abounds through Christ. It we are distressed, it is for your comfort and salvation, if we are comforted, it is for your comfort, which produces in your patient endurance of the same suffer. And our hope for you is firm, because we know that just as you share in our sufferings, so also you share in our comfort.

For the last many days we have watch on our TV, laptop, phone about the hurricane victims, as well as some having families in that area. As we watch it all unfold we see how many people are helping, neighbor helping neighbor, a stranger helping another stranger, it doesn’t matter who it is to help them, all are willing to except the help, it doesn’t matter, their race, skin color, religion or anything else just the help. Isn’t this the way God always expect his children to act and not with all the hatred that some many people seem to have. All of us are created by the same God, who is the Father of compassion and the God who comforts all of his children. It would be a beautiful sight to see if that all of his children can act this way all the time, and not just during a crisis.  One of the best thing any of us can do is to pray for others, pray for their strength to endure all of this, also pray for peace, Jesus tells us Peace I leave with you, my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid. (John 14:27) You maybe thinking to yourself, that is easy to say, and I know how hard that it can be for us at times, this is why we need to have a closer walk with the Risen Lord Jesus Christ. Because during theses difficult times in our lives we can depend on him as well as our scripture reading and more important our prayer life with God. Going thru my own valleys in life the different scriptures comes to my mind to give me the peace I need at that moment, and I also cried out to God, are you listening to me, and the words to the poem:       Footprint in the Sand,

One night I dreamed…
I was walking along the beach with the Lord. Many scenes from my life flashed across the sky. In each scene I noticed footprints in the sand. Sometimes there were two sets of footprints, Other times there was one set of footprints.
This bothered me because I noticed That during the low periods of my life, When I was suffering from anguish, sorrow or defeat, I could see only one set of footprints.
So I said to the Lord, “You promised me Lord, That if I followed you, you would walk with me always. But I have noticed that during the most trying periods of my life There has only been one set of footprints in the sand. Why, when I needed you most, have you not been there for me?”
The Lord replied, “The times when you have seen Only one set of footprints in the sand, is when I carried you.”
—Mary Stevenson

During this time God is carrying His children

Grace and Peace to You My Friends

Quiet Moments with God

Lamentations 2.png I remember my affliction and my wandering, the bitterness and the gall. I well remember them, and my soul is downcast within me. Yet this I call to mind and therefore I have hope. Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning, great is your faithfulness. I say to myself, “The Lord is my portion, therefore I will wait for him. The Lord is good to those whose hope is in him, to the one who seeks him, it is good to wait quietly for the salvation of the Lord. It is good for one to beat the yoke while they are young. Let him sit alone in silence for the Lord has laid on him.                                        Lamentations 3:19-28

In Lamentations the prophet Jeremiah records five poems of sorrow for the fallen city.

As a new day is dawning, I sit quietly for my Lord, in Psalm 46:10 it tells us to “Be Still and Know that I Am God” forgive us Lord when we always seemed to be running around with life, and not taking the time with you, and enjoying the beginning of a new day. You have created us in your image, our soul longs for the fellowship with the one who created us. As I sit quietly, where Lord will I hear your voice, will it be in the wind that so gently touches my face and goes thru my hair, will your voice be with the singing of the birds, the song that is so beautiful in which you have created. Will I hear your voice thru the trees in the field that springtime has open their leaves, will I hear your voice as I watch the deer as it longs for the stream of clear waters. I sit and wait to hear your voice so gently in my heart and in my soul.

Prayer is certainly the grand means of drawing near to God, and all other means are helpful to us only so far as they are mixed with, or prepare us for, this.

By John Wesley

 

Grace and Peace to You My Friend