Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Wednesday Words of Encouragement

Luke 24:28-35 (HCSB) ~

They came near the village where they were going, and He gave the impression that He was going farther. But they urged Him: “Stay with us, because it’s almost evening, and now the day is almost over.” So He went in to stay with them.

It was as He reclined at the table with them that He took the bread, blessed and broke it, and gave it to them.  Then their eyes were opened, and they recognized Him, but He disappeared from their sight. So they said to each other, “Weren’t our hearts ablaze within us while He was talking with us on the road and explaining the Scriptures to us?” That very hour they got up and returned to Jerusalem. They found the Eleven and those with them gathered together,  who said, “The Lord has certainly been raised, and has appeared to Simon!” Then they began to describe what had happened on the road and how He was made known to them in the breaking of the bread.

It is the day of the resurrection and two of Jesus' disciples are walking and talking of the events that have happened.  Suddenly, a stranger comes alongside them.  He engages in conversation with them and asks them why they are looking so sad.  They proceed to tell him all that has happened the previous few days. 

As they near the village, they ask him to join them, and share a meal.  After spending quite a while with this man, it amazes me that they were so wrapped up in their grief and dismay of Jesus' death and disappearance from the tomb, that they didn't even recognize their friend. 

It was only has he took the bread, broke it and blessed it that their eyes were opened.  It was as he reached forward with his hands to give it to them, that they see the nail prints on his wrists.  It was in that physical and familiar act of breaking bread that he was revealed to them.

When I read these accounts, I often think these disciples were dense!  Yet, my faith is weak too.  I pray and ask God for faith to believe that He will act in my life yet, deep down, I doubt.  The Lord is gracious to me in my unbelief and will often give me something physical and tangible to hold on to when I struggle to believe. 

In Mark 9, Jesus tells the father of the demon possessed boy that anything is possible for the one who believes in Him.  The father then responds, "Help me in my unbelief!"  That is my prayer.  I often doubt with my finite, human mind.  I want to believe that God will do what He says.  I often have to ask God to help me in my disbelief of what He promises. And He is faithful and does this on a regular basis. 

However, I want to be able to grow in my faith.  I want to be able to trust even when I don't see immediate answers.  I want to step out in faith even when there isn't a physical, immediate sign.

I want to encourage you today to pray and ask the Lord to expand your faith vision so that you can see what is before you.  Ask Him to help you see His hand in whatever you face today. 

Let's ask God to help us see despite our weak faith.