Out from the door, I’m up for a long through the woods and over rivers challenge. What a difference a day makes. Jumping at times to miss holes and passing foxes that are startled in my head torch, to crossing streams and running through deep mud. The night run is a precarious one, but with confidence and surety of foot I make the run with hope.
From a day of feeling like all was almost hopeless, to a day of seeing growth. If we endure, God will be faithful to His promise and deliver growth. One of the many passages that I love is from Romans where it says;
Endurance produces character, and character produces hope. Now this hope does not disappoint us, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us. For at just the right time, while we were still powerless, the Messiah died for the ungodly.
One thing my run has taught me is to endure. I’m good at that, although I’m not talking about enduring physical pain because I’m a wimp when it comes to the dentist, but enduring situations until the growth appears. Not walking away.
When looking at the photograph of the tree bud I imagine what harsh winter it has gone through. This tree bud shows growth, and the fine details show beauty beyond a simple leaf. God is at work even when we think all is lost, we just have to look deeper, pray with endurance, this builds character and then hope will appear. God answers prayers.
Today I had quite a few questions about faith from people who had clearly never actually read the bible. You see for me the bible was the solid foundation that I believe, led me to becoming saved. I kept reading this bible and I found page after page of hope, despite much that seemed lost. For at the right time, Jesus came and saved me when I was powerless to save myself because of His death and resurrection. He can save everyone, they just need to turn their hearts to Him and let His Spirit do the redemptive work.
That led to the next question and the crux of the matter;
“Why do you worship a dead God?”
You see in the conversation it came out that someone had lost a loved one. That is painful and sad for all. But just as we may think of that person only existing in spirit form, if at all, this is how many think about God. Jesus rose from the dead and many think He rose as a Spirit, but the bible states clearly that Jesus presented many proofs that he rose in body as well. Eating and drinking and even encouraging those around Him to touch His wounds.
Jesus Appears to the Disciples
36 While they were still talking about this, Jesus himself stood among them and said to them, “Peace be with you.”
37 They were startled and frightened, thinking they saw a ghost. 38 He said to them, “Why are you troubled, and why do doubts rise in your minds? 39 Look at my hands and my feet. It is I myself! Touch me and see; a ghost does not have flesh and bones, as you see I have.”
40 When he had said this, he showed them his hands and feet. 41 And while they still did not believe it because of joy and amazement, he asked them, “Do you have anything here to eat?” 42 They gave him a piece of broiled fish, 43 and he took it and ate it in their presence.
44 He said to them, “This is what I told you while I was still with you: Everything must be fulfilled that is written about me in the Law of Moses, the Prophets and the Psalms.”
45 Then he opened their minds so they could understand the Scriptures. 46 He told them, “This is what is written: The Messiah will suffer and rise from the dead on the third day, 47 and repentance for the forgiveness of sins will be preached in his name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. 48 You are witnesses of these things.
This passage which was written down from the eye witnesses to this event, probably Paul and more. When you really read the passage it deals with this issue. Jesus rose in body and well as Spirit and one day we will.
Dear Lord, I pray that people are led by your Holy Spirit to read the accounts of the life of Jesus and then experience the life of Jesus in their lives. I pray we can all play our small part in bringing bibles to people so that they may have a sure foundation of the life of Jesus, the first fruits of the creation and establishment of Your Kingdom.