Jesus yearns for peace for you

Scripture Notes on Luke 19

And when He drew near and saw the city, He wept over it, saying, “Would that you, even you, had known on this day the things that make for peace! But now they are hidden from your eyes.  (Luke 19:41-42)

Time after time in Scripture, we see that Jesus has a heart for the hurting, the broken, and the lost.  Here it is again, this time for the unbelieving city of Jerusalem.

Jesus weeps because despite all of their prayers for the peace of Jerusalem, there will be no peace for these people because they will reject the only One who can truly provide it — Jesus Himself.

He doesn’t stand aloof and cast judgment.  He doesn’t rail against them in anger.  No, Jesus weeps because He yearns for the people to have peace.

He does the same for you.

May you not miss an opportunity to receive the peace of Jesus.  May you embrace Him with open arms and follow Him with open eyes and obey Him with open hands, because in so doing you will be giving God one of the desires of His heart.

Because Jesus yearns for peace for you.

-Pastor Phillip

Jesus delights in persistence

Scripture Notes on Luke 18

And he cried out, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!”  And those who were in front rebuked him, telling him to be silent. But he cried out all the more, “Son of David, have mercy on me!”  And Jesus stopped and commanded him to be brought to him. And when he came near, he asked him,  “What do you want me to do for you?” He said, “Lord, let me recover my sight.”  And Jesus said to him, “Recover your sight; your faith has made you well.” -Luke 18:38-42

Most of us don’t like to be bothered repeatedly.

Few parents encourage their kids to shout louder after they’ve heard them the first few times.  Few friends encourage each other to keep calling again and again after the first conversation was finished.

But Jesus isn’t like that.

In the first part of Luke 18, Jesus tells a story to demonstrate how persistent prayers are a delight to the Father, and in the last part of the chapter He demonstrates the same heart by healing a blind man who just wouldn’t shut up.

The man had cried out loudly and the crowd told him to shut it, but he persisted.  The man had been blocked by the crowd but he didn’t give up.  The man wasn’t afraid to make a scene because he believed that Jesus could heal him and he showed his faith by his persistent action.

And Jesus stopped what He was doing, and responded.

No matter what your need looks like, may you have the confidence to continue asking for Jesus to intervene.  May you have courage and diligence to keep praying, keep asking, and keep walking in faith, and as you do, take heart in this.

Jesus delights in persistence.

-Pastor Phillip

Let Jesus free you from rejection

Scripture Notes on Luke 10

“But whenever you enter a town and they do not receive you, go into its streets and say, ‘Even the dust of your town that clings to our feet we wipe off against you. Nevertheless know this, that the kingdom of God has come near.’ … The one who hears you hears Me, and the one who rejects you rejects Me, and the one who rejects Me rejects Him who sent Me.’” -Luke 10:10-11, 16

It’s not about you.

Jesus sends His disciples out and gives them explicit instructions about what to do if and when their message is not received by a town they visit.  He doesn’t say to ignore it or pretend the rejection didn’t happen.  He doesn’t say to keep coming back and looking for ways to change their minds.

He says to let it go.

Not only that, but He reminds them of something so critical, so crucial to the Gospel mission that it can make or break a person who is trying to share Jesus’ love with others.

It’s not about you; it’s about Him.

Disciples of Jesus will always face rejection.  Ours is a message of salvation not through “self-actualization” or “achieving your potential” but of repentance and being born again.  Many people don’t want to acknowledge that their sin is so bad that they need a Savior, or that their religious works are insufficient for salvation.

So they reject us.

But, when this happens, Jesus’ message to His disciples then is the same that He speaks to us now.  “The one who rejects you rejects me…”  The one who rejects us isn’t rejecting us at all, but Jesus.  His call to us then is to wipe the dust off our feet, push aside the feelings of personal failure and move on.  This doesn’t mean we don’t keep trying to witness as we’re able, but that we don’t take it personally when our offer is refused.

Because it’s not about us; it’s about Him.

As you share Jesus with others, may you be free from the tyranny of false rejection.  May His Spirit remind you that your calling isn’t to make changes in people, but make introductions for people and let Jesus do the work.  He’s got your back, so let Jesus free you from rejection.

-Pastor Phillip

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