Paulines Daily Reflections
Do you remember the story of Jesus and the disciples in the storm and they said "Lord save us otherwise we're going to drown" what happened next is quite remarkable because as you read on in Matthew it says that they worshipped him and said " you really are the son of God" (Matthew 14:33).
Considering that these same disciples were with Jesus from day one and they saw the miracles he performed why didn't they worship him on those occasions?
The answer is that when they thought they were drowning, it was all about them and that's what made the difference.
Jesus saves! Hallelujah.
What is maturity? When do we grow up? When do we put away childish things and become adults? I know people who still have their train sets and teddies, should I consider them immature? No not really because what was once a childhood passion has become a hobby and it isn't harming anyone else.
Paul wrote to Corinthians " when I was young, I spoke, thought and reasoned like a child, but once I became an adult I put away childish ways. (1 Corinthians 13:11).
Paul was talking about our faith journey. We started out by not knowing much but as we learn more and understand more, we grow spiritually.
How patient are you? Are you the sort of person who wants instant results or are you "a work in progress". It says in Romans 5: 4-5 " patience produces character, and character produces hope. And this hope will never disappoint us
God is more patient with us than we are with ourselves. If something doesn't work out we think we are a failure. God doesn't think so. God is quietly whispering in our ear "try again, yes you are almost there, don't give up, be patient"
Whenever you feel like that remember that "God began doing a good work on you, I am sure that He will continue it until it is finished when Jesus Christ comes again." (Philippians 1:6)
How many of you can remember getting a piece of blotting paper, a saucer and some cress seeds? Patiently we waited for the seed to sprout and about a week later we had grown enough cress to go in our sandwich.
Jesus tells a similar story about a mustard seed. It is a tiny seed but grows into a magnificent tree.
We are God's mustard seeds. Our faith may seem small but through prayer and by reading the Bible, we are getting the nourishment we need to grow.
He is the gardener. "Though it is the smallest of all your seeds, yet when it grows it is the largest of garden plants and becomes a tree, so that the birds of the air come and perch in its branches"(Matthew 13:32)
This year has been horrendous for many students who anxiously awaited their exam results to see if they got their place at university. Some got better grades and some were bitterly disappointed and have postponed their start at college or university. Back in my day we didn't get all of this practical work included in our final results and it's the same for many tests that we sit. For example if you take a driving test nowadays you have to do both practical and theory.
Our faith can be a bit like that. We know the basics but do we put it into practice. Are we really committed to our faith? Do we practice what we preach! The book of James tells us "Brothers and sisters, what use is it for people to claim they have faith if they have no works to show for it? Can that faith save them?" (James 2:14)
I value my friends so much. I know lots of people but I suppose that doing the job I did that was natural. Throughout my working life I met people who had no one. No families, no brothers or sisters, no cousins, no uncles or aunts they had absolutely no one. I feel sad for people in that situation and like it or not I have heard too many elderly people say “I am the only one left, or when you get to my age your friends either pass away or go into nursing homes” Some elderly people don’t speak to anyone for a long time unless the carer rushes in and out or the district nurse comes to dress a wound. Loneliness is a killer. Can you imagine never getting a phone call, a letter, or a birthday or Christmas card. Imagine never seeing someone’s smile or someone saying “hi, how are you?” Your smile can really make someone’s day. God decided that Adam needed someone to share his life and so he created Eve. The Bible says “the Lord God said it is not good for man to be alone” (Genesis 2:18). We are never alone if we let Jesus Christ into our lives. Even though we can’t see him, we are comforted by knowing He is with us.