Christianity 201

August 21, 2022

Seeing God’s Work in the World

Filed under: Christianity - Devotions — paulthinkingoutloud @ 5:33 pm
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Sorting through devotions online, today I discovered a source which, in one of their writings made a statement about the main purpose of scripture, or what they called “the primary theme and promise of the Bible;” and that statement was completely erroneous. And with that I knew I couldn’t share anything they had written. Presenting devotions from a variety of sources is a responsibility taken seriously, and even though there is a disclaimer, sometimes including someone here implies endorsement. Hopefully we get it right most days.


It’s a year later, and we’re back at Life Talk, the devotional page of Methodist Life. The writer today is John Grimm.

The Greatness of God

NRSVUE*.Luke.9.37 On the next day, when they had come down from the mountain, a great crowd met him. 38 Just then a man from the crowd shouted, “Teacher, I beg you to look at my son; he is my only child. 39 Suddenly a spirit seizes him, and all at once he[a] shrieks. It convulses him until he foams at the mouth; it mauls him and will scarcely leave him. 40 I begged your disciples to cast it out, but they could not.” 41 Jesus answered, “You faithless and perverse generation, how much longer must I be with you and put up with you? Bring your son here.” 42 While he was being brought forward, the demon dashed him to the ground in convulsions. But Jesus rebuked the unclean spirit, healed the boy, and gave him back to his father.

Wow.  That is what can be said about Jesus casting out a demon from a boy.  We should be astounded at the greatness of God.  For the man to see his son free from the demon would have been spectacular!

When is the last time we were astounded by the greatness of God?

Did this astonishment happen when a confirmand** felt the Holy Spirit present in her?

Did this astonishment happen when a loved one quietly died after battling a terrible disease?

Did this astonishment happen in a worship service as Jesus healed a broken relationship?

Maybe we are like the generation who watched Jesus cast the demon out of the boy.  Maybe we are faithless and perverse.  It might be that Jesus needs to rebuke us so that we can see the greatness of God.

God, we want to see your greatness.  However, our lack of faith and our perverse ways keep us from noticing your power at work in this world.  Heal our lack of faith and drive out our perverse ways.  We want to see you work in our world.  In the name of Jesus Christ, we pray.  Amen.


Footnotes

  1. 9.39 Or it

Editor’s notes

*The citation, NRSVUE, stands for New Revised Standard Version Updated Edition, releasing in September.

**A confirmand is a person completing the process of preparation to enter into the sacrament of confirmation. In your tradition, think about someone preparing for adult baptism, or confession of faith, or even someone anticipating a missions trip.