Friday – Chapter 8
Saturday – Chapter 9
Sunday – Chapter 10
Monday – Reflection
Tuesday – Praises & Petitions
“The miracles of Jesus were the ordinary works of his father, wrought small and swift that we might take them in.” – George MacDonald, 19th century Scottish minister and writer
Chapters 8-10 cover many of Jesus’ miracles as he traveled around with his disciples. He fed thousands, again, with only a few loaves of bread and some fish, he brought sight to the blind, cast demons out of children, made the deaf hear, and more. During his journey, he talked with his disciples about what was coming. He predicted his own death and resurrection, multiple times. His disciples did not understand what it all meant. They did not like hearing about his death and they couldn’t wrap their heads around rising from the dead. They were a little frightened and anxious. Wouldn’t you be?
Jesus knew his time was limited. He was trying to give his disciples information to help them when he was arrested and crucified. He was teaching them how to follow him when he wasn’t present. They didn’t get it. Would you get it?
Jesus also gave many people indications on how to obtain eternal life. Have faith like a child, serve others and put yourself last, sell all of your belongings and follow Jesus. He was in fact leaving his wisdom with his followers so that they could continue the ministry he had started.
These chapters cover miracles, the prediction of Jesus’ death and resurrection, marriage and divorce, children, faith, wealth and eternal life. That is a tremendous amount of information to digest, don’t you think?
So, in my own reflection of these difficult topics, one thing stuck out to me. In chapter 8, Jesus feeds 4,000 people again with 7 loaves of bread and a few fish. His disciples, again, were questioning how there would be enough food. Remember that not long ago, (in chapter 6), Jesus fed 5,000 with 5 loaves of bread and 2 fish and had 12 full baskets left over. So, in my mind, the disciples have witnessed the power of Jesus and have witnessed specifically his miracle of producing enough food. Why then were they concerned? This happened again when they all left on a boat to cross the lake. The disciples did not bring any food and found just 1 loaf of bread. They were worried and Jesus again said to them, “Why are you so worried about having no food? Won’t you ever learn or understand?” (Mark 8:17b)
I don’t know. I think if I were Jesus and my disciples were acting like this, I would be pretty annoyed! I mean he proved to them over and over what the Holy Spirit could do and they still worried and questioned.
Now, bringing this to today, aren’t we just like the disciples? Here we are reading about these miracles, learning about them since we were young some of us, and as we read, we say, “Yes! We believe! We know Jesus can do anything!’ Then, we go to work the next day and….. worry. Worry about our job, our mortgage, our home, our children, our parents, our friends, money, our church, illnesses, school, cars, etc. The worrying never stops.
Aren’t we acting just like the disciples? Shouldn’t we know better? And, we have hindsight, which they did not have! We know where this story goes. We know that Jesus sacrifices his life for us an rises from the dead for us. So, what are we worrying about, really? I will need to remind myself of this next time I start worrying!
Let’s do this. Think of something that is weighing on you now or has been recently. Let’s let it go together. Share it in the comments section below and ask God to take the worry away from you. We know that we don’t need to worry, it is our human nature. It is not what God wants for us.
My recent worry is my job, which I love. I am teaching kindergarten right now. Next year, I will be teaching a kindergarten/first grade combo class. I am extremely excited about this, but I am also nervous. Can I do it? Will I find the time I need to prepare and implement everything that needs attention? Will I still be able to make it fun for the children?
God, please take my worries. I know you have placed me in this school for a reason and I trust in your plan. I will take one step at a time to prepare myself for your work in this school and I will embrace the changes that lie ahead with confidence in you!
So, what are your worries? How can we help you give them to God?