The following reflection is courtesy of Don Schwager (c) 2015, whose website is located at DailyScripture.net
Do you approach the Lord Jesus with expectant faith for healing, pardon, and transformation in Christ-like holiness? Isaiah prophesied that God would come not only to restore his people, he would also come to recreate new heavens and a new earth (Isaiah 65:17). Jesus’ miracles are signs that manifest the presence of God and the coming of his kingdom of power and glory. When a high ranking official, who was very likely from King Herod’s court, heard the reports of Jesus preaching and miracles, he decided to seek Jesus out for an extraordinary favor. If this story happened today the media headlines would probably say: “High ranking official leaves capital in search of miracle cure from a small town carpenter.”
It took raw courage for a high ranking court official to travel twenty miles in search of Jesus, the Galilean carpenter. He had to swallow his pride and put up with some ridicule from his cronies. And when he found the healer carpenter, Jesus seemed to put him off with the blunt statement that people would not believe unless they saw some kind of miracle or sign from heaven. Jesus likely said this to test the man to see if his faith was in earnest. If he turned away in irritation or with discouragement, he would prove to be insincere. Jesus, perceiving his faith, sent him home with the assurance that his prayer had been heard.
It was probably not easy for this man to return to his family with only an assuring word from Jesus that his son would be healed. Couldn’t Jesus have come to this man’s house and layed his hands on the dying child? Without a moment’s hesitation, the court official believed in Jesus and took him at his word. He began his journey back home with renewed faith and hope – ready to face whatever might await him – whether it be the anguish of his distraught family and or the scorn of unbelieving neighbors. Before he could even make it all the way back to his home town, news reached him that his son had recovered. What astonishment must have greeted his family and friends when they heard that his son was instantly restored to health at the very moment when Jesus had pronounced the words – your son will live!
Jesus’ miraculous healings show his generous kindness and extravagant love – a love that bends down in response to our misery and wretched condition. Is there any area in your life where you need healing, pardon, change, and restoration? If you seek the Lord with trust and expectant faith, he will not disappoint you. He will meet you more than half way and give you what you need. The Lord Jesus never refused anyone who put their trust in him. Surrender your doubts and fears, your pride and guilt at his feet, and trust in his saving word and healing love.
“Lord Jesus, your love never fails and your mercy is unceasing. Give me the courage to surrender my stubborn pride, fear and doubts to your surpassing love, wisdom and knowledge. Make be strong in faith, persevering in hope, and constant in love.”
The following reflection is courtesy of PresentationMinistries.com (c) 2015. Their website is located at PresentationMinistries.com
I BELIEVE INTO EASTER
“He and his whole household thereupon became believers.” John 4:53
Isaiah prophesied that the Lord would create new heavens and a new earth (Is 65:17), but he never dreamed of life eternal in heaven. He prophesied all would live to be well over a hundred years old (Is 65:20), but never imagined we would live forever. The Lord has promised more than we can ever ask for or imagine (Eph 3:20). “Eye has not seen, ear has not heard, nor has it so much as dawned on man what God has prepared for those who love Him” (1 Cor 2:9).
This Easter, we will be graced to enter more deeply into this risen, everlasting life of heaven. Because risen life is far beyond our limited experience, we will have to walk by faith not by sight (2 Cor 5:7) in order to live this new life. We must put our faith “in the word” Jesus has spoken to us and start for our heavenly home (see Jn 4:50).
On almost every day in the next three weeks before Easter, the Church reads to us from the Gospel of John. Although all Scripture will help us grow in faith (see Rm 10:17), John’s Gospel was written specifically “to help you believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, so that through this faith you may have life in His name” (Jn 20:31). In these next three weeks, immerse yourself in John’s Gospel, and grow in faith. By faith, you will live the risen life this Easter as never before. Easter is for believers. Believe; grow in faith.
Prayer: Father, increase my faith (Lk 17:5). Promise: “Return home. Your son will live.” Jn 4:50 Praise:Jesus used a sales pitch for cemetery plots to get Susan to think about where she would be after death, and to draw her back to Himself. (As an aid to reading John’s Gospel, order our Simple Reading Guide to John & Revelation.)
Rescript: In accord with the Code of Canon Law, I hereby grant my permission to publish One Bread, One Body covering the period from February 1, 2015 through March 31, 2015.
Most Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Auxiliary Bishop, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, August 25, 2014.
The rescript is a declaration that a book or pamphlet is considered to be free of doctrinal or moral error. It is not implied that those who have granted ecclesial permission agree with the contents, opinions, or statements