Sunday, September 11, 2016

The Object Lesson

We live in a world that has so much goodness but also selfishness.  We serve a God that is so loving that He guides our steps but does not dictate them.

I shouldn't let it frustrate me, but I do, that people want to live with no expectation from God (the one who created them) and yet get mad at Him that he is not "controlling or taking care" of their issue.

In Mark chapter 11, the week before He was to be crucified on a cross for all mankind, He was still thinking of us and not himself.  Let's remember He was still flesh. He was hungry, He was tired, and He carried a huge responsibility to teach the people all that He could before leaving this earth in human form. 

He saw a fig tree that was producing no fruit.... and He cursed it.  He saw that it wasn't doing what it was created to do and went as far to say it was just taking up soil. (Luke 13:6-8)  He also saw the greed, deceit, and injustice of what people were doing to distract people in prayer in his temple. He showed great anger and spoke straight, bold, and even turned some tables.  A side note.... He had already addressed this same issue months before with these people and here we are again.  This anger was toward sin not over a personal insult or petty issue (that's a message in itself).

These two objects were His way to teach the people they were outwardly fruitless (the tree with no fruit).  There life was created with purpose to produce fruit for others.  They were inwardly corrupt (the temple that had merchants taking advantage of people and distracting the people that came to pray).   They were allowing things inside that brought greed, deceit, and darkness.

The final object lesson was about prayer and faith.  He used objects that seem "impossible" to man's eyes.  The idea of bringing a dead tree back to life and moving a mountain.(Mark 11: 20-25)

The lesson in all three of these is that GOD HAS EXPECTATIONS for our lives. He wasn't saying, "Hey, live like you want, be your own God, and then come to me and get whatever you want".  I mean, even the biggest idiot on the planet could see that would be destructive. Would we parent that way? NO!
" Have faith in God," Jesus answered. "I tell you the truth, if anyone says to this mountain, 'Go throw yourself into the sea and does not doubt in his heart but believes that what he says will happen, it will be done for him. Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours." Mark 11: 22-24

But lets be educated here.  God has expectations.
1. You need to believe in Him
2. Your heart needs to be aligned with his (not praying with selfish motives)
 3. your request should be for the good of the Kingdom.

These are very difficult for the seasoned believer let alone for someone new in Christ.  Let me use this simple example that you might understand:

If you were struggling with your weight.....and at some point in your life you lost a lot of weight and you became a different person.  You were consumed with YOU.  Everything revolved around YOUR workout, what YOU were going to eat, and all your thoughts were on food, exercise, and YOU.  Is that for the good of the Kingdom?  Is that aligned with His heart?  BUT if you cry out to the Lord and ask for his help, guidance, and self-discipline to be healthier so that you might have more energy to do things for His purpose......Now we are aligned with His heart and for the good of His Kingdom.

Let's be good students and learn from these object lessons!

For the good of the Kingdom,
The Mrs. Pastor  

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