“Please read Luke 4:31-44
I graduated from school in 1975, yes, I am a relic. Ok now you have stopped trying to figure out how long ago that is, let’s get back to my thoughts. 🙂
I went straight from school to Northwest Baptist Theological College with the goal I was going to achieve my One Year Certificate in Biblical Studies. I was shy, oh man was I shy and so moving from Nanaimo to Vancouver was a GIANT step for me. Once I got over the shell shock of having to share a bathroom with a pile of other girls, and eating in front of all those people (I was shy!) I sunk my thoughts into my classes. I look back now and feel rather embarrassed. You see, I failed, no really I failed, I never did get my one year certificate. Know what I failed in? New Testament, yup, New Testament. By that time I had been a Christian about 7 years, but had grown up with a Jesus loving Mom and learned much from her. So why did I fail New Testament? Over the years I have blamed the Professor. He had just come back from intense studies in England and came to a class of newbies and used word and phrases that went right over my head. So what better to do than to blame him? Lame huh. The problem was me. I didn’t try and learn around those phrases. I certainly didn’t read through the bible very well, hence the reason for this reflection.
As part of that class we were to read through the entire New Testament. I LOVED the Old Testament class because the prof made it alive and applicable and I soaked it up and got great marks. The New Testament I didn’t because of how I perceived it through the phrases and mannerism of the professor. All my peers didn’t fail, just me. Well, all these many years later here I sit in my living room in a bit of shell shock. The time I spent complaining I should have been reading. The verses that I have asked you to read today out of Luke are filled with power and authority by Jesus. I obviously skimmed over these ones because I never knew some of the details of these miracles. Vs 35 “Be Quiet!” Jesus said that to the demons who were yapping at Him and were ultimately cast out. He commanded them to leave yes, but first He told them to be quiet. He was not going to have a discussion with them, nor argue, they were to just be quiet. Oh yeah and in vs 39 Simon’s mother in law had a fever and Jesus healed her, but did you know she got up and served them? That means that Jesus didn’t just take the fever away, she was well, well enough to serve. Based on my time in Luke, I think I have some more surprises coming my way. Maybe to you those things are a surprise but for me I remember just a mini version I had in my head, but the really picture never made my heart until today.
What is my point? Be a good student, take the material laid before you in the book labeled the Bible and read. I promise you that there will be days your faith with be tested because there are things in there that are hard to wrap our brains around. I promise you will be humbled that Jesus gave so much for us in the gift of mercy through the amazing life, death, resurrection and promise of return to take us home. You will be challenged by the disciples and others and their dedicated service even in the face of some pretty awful things. And you will be filled with hope and promise and faith as the Holy Spirit speaks into you from the pages of God’s word. Don’t let your learning be based off of just one teacher, or pastor or friend, open your Bible and read. Like Joshua 1:8 says we are to mediate on it day and night.
Failure in achieving that certificate has bothered me all these years later, but in that failure as a teen it has thrown me into the bible now as an ALMOST senior. Even our toughest times in our faith walk can turn into the path that takes us to the deepest soul impact years later.
Love, Hugs n Prayers