This coming Wednesday, February 18, is Ash Wednesday and begins the Lenten season and is a good time to read through the four Gospels, Matthew, Mark, Luke and John to follow Jesus during His time of ministry which leads Him to the Cross. Let’s begin the walk to Calvary by closely following Him along the dusty roads so we can listen in and watch along with His disciples as He ministers to the people.
Matthew, chapters 7-9 list several major miracles of Jesus and while I was trying to choose one to discuss here I saw that each of them has one important common thread and that is great faith!
In chapter 8 we read of the Centurion who came to Jesus and told Him that his servant was at home, paralyzed and in terrible pain. “Jesus said to him, “I will go and heal him.” The Centurion replied, ‘Lord I do not deserve to have you come under my roof. But just say the word, and my servant will be healed. For I myself am a man under authority, with soldiers under me. I tell this one, ‘Go’, and he goes; and that one, ‘Come,’ and he comes. I say to my servant, ‘Do this,’ and he does it.’ When Jesus heard this, He was astonished and said to those following Him, “I tell you the truth, I have not found anyone in Israel with such great faith.”
In the 23rd verse of that same chapter Jesus got into a boat with His disciples and was going to take a rest while they crossed to the other side. “Without warning, a furious storm came up on the lake, so that the waves swept over the boat. But Jesus was sleeping. The disciples went and woke him, saying, “Lord, save us we’re going to drown!” He replied, “You of little faith, why are you so afraid?” Then He got up and rebuked the winds and the waves, and it was completely calm.”
The Centurion believed Jesus could and would do the miracle so strongly that he didn’t even need Him to go to his house he just wanted him to speak the Word! I find it hard to understand that the disciples were with Him every day and saw Him do so many miracles, starting with turning water into the best wine of the day at a wedding, healing the lame, raising the dead, opening deaf ears, delivering people from demons, and yet even though they were on the boat with Him, they were afraid that they were going to drown! Now I have a problem with that!
Of course it happens today also, we get answers to our prayers yet when a crisis, large or small, occurs, we panic, “HELP! I don’t know WHAT I am going to do!”
I encourage you to read all of the Gospels during the rest of this forty day period, and while you are reading try to see yourself as the Centurion, with so much faith that we don’t have to have someone to lay hands on us, be anointed with oil or even be at church, although I highly recommend all the above, we can simply say “God, I need help and I know that Jesus died on the cross so that I could approach Your throne boldly, so I am asking you in His name and through His blood of Jesus, to (heal me, supply my need, give me clarity of thought).”
I can promise you that your faith will not go unanswered. God is faithful. An old hymn, taken from the scripture in Lamentations chapter 3 says, “Great is Thy faithfulness, morning by morning new mercies I see, all I have needed your hand has provided, Great is Thy faithfulness, Lord unto me.”
If your faith seems weak, cry out to the Lord as the father who brought his son to Jesus did in Mark 9:24 “Lord I believe, please help my unbelief!” God will not get mad at you for admitting it, He already knows that about you and He will give you the help you need!
We are His children and He gave his only Son so that we could come to Him any time we want to!