Don’t choose door number one!

IMG_19800105_213701Mark 6:21-29

“And she went in and said to her mother, ‘for what should I ask?’ and she said, ‘The head of John the Baptist.'” v. 24

When I was a kid I used to love watching game shows on television. I watched as the contestants were offered a choice. They could keep the new car they had just won or they could go for  broke and choose the mystery prize behind door number one. Too often they would choose the door only to find they had traded in the car for something lame like a goat, or a box of pop tarts. What a disappointment. But do you know we do things like that every day? We throw away all that God has for us for revenge. We choose to get revenge or live in bitterness, only to find at the end of the day we have traded in the kingdom of God for a head on a platter. We chose door number one and lost it all. That’s what happens when we live in bitterness.

Do you have a bitter spirit toward someone? Who’s face is keeping you up at night? Do you have any idea how much your bitterness is costing you…and those who love you? Holding that grudge is doing more damage to your world than you may believe. Take a look with me at what it did the Herodias, and everyone around her. Herodias was bitter at John the Baptist, a righteous man imprisoned for speaking the truth about the immorality of the affair between Herod and Herodias, the wife of his brother. Herod kept John in prison, and was afraid to kill him. Herodias wanted him dead. One evening her opportunity for revenge came. Herod, was partying with his friends in the palace. Herodias’ daughter was brought in to provide entertainment as a dancer. In a moment of drunken stupidity the king made a promise to the young dance queen. “I’ll give you anything you want, up to half my kingdom.” He said. Because his guests heard him make the promise, the old boy was stuck in a pit of obligation with no way out. Here’s where we see the price of bitterness. Herodias’ daughter goes to her mom and says, “Mom, I’ve just been given the offer of a life time! What should I ask for?” Imagine a game show host walking up to Herodias at this point; “You have just won half the kingdom of Israel. You can take it or go for the grudge behind prison door number one. You can’t have the kingdom and the grudge. Which will you choose?”  Drum roll please. She chose the door. Now think for a minute. I have two daughters and two sons. If one of them came to me and said, “Hey dad! I’ve just been offered anything I want, up to half the kingdom-country-state-whatever, what should I ask for?” I think I’d set my sights a little higher than a head on a platter. But Herodias couldn’t see beyond her own bitterness. The opportunity of a lifetime was placed before her, and she could see nothing but revenge. Her bitterness so consumed her that she couldn’t see the kingdom laid out before her and her daughter. Imagine what she could have asked for. She could have demanded half the kingdom for her daughter to rule, wealth and riches to set her daughter up for life or  at the very least, opportunities for her daughter to travel and experience life. Oh but wait. I guess that’s the problem. She wasn’t thinking about her daughter, but about herself. That’s what bitterness does. It makes you willing to rob even your children for what you want. If that weren’t bad enough, she didn’t even have the vision to see what she could have had for herself. She could have offered to help her daughter rule the kingdom, or travel the world, or spend the wealth. But the blinders of hatred stole the future. Finally, poor Herod. He had to carry out the plan. Granted, it was his fault for sure. But he was forced to sin against God for the sake of her hostility. So all that Herodias could have gained was lost as she dragged all her supposed loved ones into the pit of her fury. At the end of the day all she ended up with was a head on a platter. She threw away the car and chose door number one. A moment of satisfaction that cost her soul forever. Bitterness can give you such tunnel vision that you will throw away the kingdom, just to have someone’s head on a platter. Today if you are holding a grudge, however justified it may be, ask yourself if it’s worth the price you and all those who have to live with you are paying. If you hold that grudge much longer you can be sure that:

– The innocent will be punished.

– Opportunities will be lost forever.

– Others will be dragged into sin on your behalf.

– You will throw away the kingdom, where forgiveness is the rule.

And at the end of the day, you’ll have nothing to show for it, but something dead on a platter. How much better it will be if you and I learn that forgiveness may be hard, but in the long run, it’s a whole lot easier than living in bitterness. On the cross, as Jesus hung there taking abuse from the authorities of Rome and Israel, he could have come down and made them all pay. I’m glad today that he saw beyond his own pain to my need. He chose to say, “Father forgive them…” to those who deserved judgment. He could have had our heads on a platter, but he gave us the kingdom instead. May God enable us to do the same.

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You can have my head, but not my heart

Mark 6:14-20
“But when Herod heard of it, he said, ‘ John, whom I beheaded, has been raised.'”

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The world will either steal your heart or take your head, if you are a follower of Jesus. The world took Herod’s heart, and removed John’s head. Christian, which of these has the world taken from you?
It’s an ugly thing when truth, once rejected, raises its head again. Herod was so tormented by his deeds that guilt became the backdrop of his life. Everything seemed to remind him of what he had done. Have you ever been there? Herod had beheaded John the Baptist. The life of a righteous voice was snuffed out, all because of Herod’s sinful pride, and the bitterness of Herodias, with whom Herod had been having an affair. John spoke the truth boldly, telling Herod, that his alternative lifestyle was sinful, and it landed him in prison. There was no pandering to popular opinion, or cowering to political forces, as we see today, with John. He preached the word of the Lord with no fear of repercussions. It cost John his life, but cost Herod his soul. John said to Herod, in essence, “You can have my head, but you can’t have my heart. It’s already taken.” We need more people willing to look the world in the eye and say the same thing. “You can have my head, but not my heart.”
Poor Herod. Like so many in power today, he thought he could silence the truth by removing it’s voice from the public square. But he found out that such vain attempts only make the voice of truth louder. When Jesus began his ministry, people began to talk. They wanted to know who this Nazarene was. Speculations buzzed around the royal palace like bees. “Some say he’s Elijah,” “Others say he’s one of the other prophets.” But for poor Herod, there could be only one answer. “John, whom I beheaded, has been raised.” He knew, when he killed John, that he was attacking a righteous voice. But what he didn’t know was the power behind that voice. He had taken John’s head, but not his heart. Now, everything that happened in Herod’s life seemed to scream out John’s name. He couldn’t sleep without John invading his thoughts. He couldn’t eat a meal without thinking about John’s preaching. He couldn’t even look at Herodias without the nausea of guilt rising up like a snake from the pit of his stomach. This man was tormented in a bad way. No wonder, when he heard about this Jesus of Nazareth, he could only assume that John had come back to haunt him.
There are those in our day who see our gospel as a threat to their power. They want to silence the voice of truth in the public square. They vainly hope if the message of Christ can either be watered down into a generic message of goodwill, with no moral imperative, or completely removed from society, then they can go on about their business with no restrictions. What they fail to see is, that you may be able to behead the voice of truth but you cannot silence it’s heart. While many people pleasers give in to societal pressure and preach a gospel, with no cross, no repentance, no need for salvation-which really is no gospel at all, and others may slip quietly into the dark corners of the church house, hiding the light under a pew, there will always be those few precious voices, who will not be silenced. You can lock them up and remove their heads, but they will not be silent. You can have our heads on a silver platter, but you cannot have our hearts. Our hearts belong to the Nazarene.
Then, as Herod discovered, they will see that truth has a nasty way of raising its head in the most inconvenient places. Are you being haunted by the truth? You have locked it up and thrown away the key more than once, you’ve even attempted to remove its head. But still everywhere you turn you’re being reminded of your need for God. I believe if Herod had ever listened to the voice that kept him up at night, even at this late hour in his life, he could have been saved. If he had ever been willing to face his past sins, and come to this mysterious Nazarene for help, he surely would have found it. The reason truth keeps raising its head, is that God is still calling us. He says to a nation who wants to remove his head, “Come back to me.” He says to the cynic who rejected God long ago, but still hasn’t escaped that awful emptiness, “come back.” He says to the one who hates him, “But I still love you. Come back.” He says to the professor, who has dedicated his life to eradicating God from the minds of future generations, but has to convince himself that God isn’t real, and is finding his own theories harder and harder to believe, “Stop kidding yourself and come home.” He says to the scientist, who can’t bring himself to admit publicly that the universe isn’t as random as he once thought. “Come home.” He says to the preacher, who gave his heart to the culture, in order to save his head, “Come home.” Friends, the truth is all around us. It’s voice will not be silenced. Let’s not make Herod’s mistake. Let’s come home to our Lord Jesus and find the life we were meant for. Christians, let us stand firm for the truth and say with John, “You can have my head, but not my heart. That belongs to Jesus.”

I dare you to try this.

Mark 6:7-13

“and he called the twelve and began to send them out.”

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I’m reading this scripture today, about Jesus sending out his apostles to do his work, and its causing me to think–which some would call a miracle in itself. It’s making me think about the wide gap between how they did ministry then and how we do it today. No, don’t worry, this isn’t going to be another devotion on what the church is doing wrong. We all get it that the gap exists. Today I want to reflect on how to close the gap in a practical, and maybe even scary fun, way. Below I have listed ten things, based on Jesus’ “Disciple training seminar” that could help each of us get out there and do the stuff Jesus called us to do. Here is a ten-step-dare for you and a friend to take that just may change your life and someone else’s.

  1. Listen. “and he called the twelve…” First, put away all your spiritual books (except the Bible) and your church calendar. Go somewhere quiet and pray. Ask God to lay some person or place on your heart. Don’t wear yourself out with, “How do I know this is God or me?” questions. Just take any impressions you get, by faith. Scary right? I know. That’s awesome. Stop being brilliant and just do it. When you get a sense of what God is putting on your heart, write it down, and simply say, “Yes Lord.”
  2. Get prepared to go. “and began to send them out…” Next, and yes I’m being serious, set a time and date. Prepare to go. Get it in your mind that God is calling you and will be with you. Commit to it. This is not time for “someday maybe.” You’re in or you’re not. Decide.
  3. Get a partner. “two by two…” What’s with all this, lone wolf, just me and Jesus, stuff? He always sent his followers out together. Recruit a partner who is just as crazy as you are, who will go with you. Better yet, get someone younger and less experienced than you so you can be a disciple maker along the way.
  4. Power up. “and gave them authority over unclean spirits…” Okay now we’re gonna freak some of you religious experts out. He gave them supernatural authority to cast out demons. He didn’t arm them with donuts and coffee, but with supernatural power. You and your partner need to spend time praying for God to fill you with his spirit so that you can walk in supernatural power. I told you it was gonna get weird.
  5. Put away your stuff. “take nothing for your journey except a staff…” You heard it. No cell phone. No ipad. No mp3. Leave your tablet at home. Selfies are a bit contradictory anyway. Don’t bring money or credit cards. Yes I’m serious.
  6. Dress simply. “wear sandals and not to put on two tunics…” This is no time to show off your designer clothes or your cheesy Christian t-shirts. They don’t help as much as you think. Most people outside church think those clever slogans are silly. Don’t get me started on how the gospel is trivialized by cheesy marketing… oh never mind. Dress simply and modestly. Look like a normal person who just loves people and you’ll be fine.
  7. Spend time. “When you enter a house, stay there…” When we go visit people in need, why are we in such a hurry to get away? It’s like we want to drop off the food, or the gospel tract and run away as fast as we can. Go prepared to spend time with someone. Don’t walk up and start spouting off Bible verses. Get to know somebody if you can. I realize people are busy, but you’d be surprised at the people out there who have no one to talk to.
  8. Get over it. “If any place will not receive you…” Hey, some people, possibly most people, aren’t gonna be interested in talking to you. It’s okay. Get over it. Resist self pity. Go to the next person.
  9. Call for change. “they went out and proclaimed that people should repent…” As you talk to people be prepared to share the gospel. Don’t sugar coat it with a bunch of feel good hype. Tell people who Jesus is and what he has done for us. Tell them why we need a change. Don’t hateful, but be straight forward.
  10. Go supernatural. “they cast out many demons and anointed with oil many who were sick and healed them…” If there are any sick people there pray for them. Don’t you dare say something cheesy like, “Lord please be with so and so.” He’s already with them! Lay hands on them (with their permission only ) and ask God to heal them. Now for those who have not become offended at this point and are still reading, ask if there are any other needs you can pray for. Pray and expect God to do something. God calls us to be more than nice people who smile in restaurants. He calls us to be His very presence. So expect God to minister to that home in a powerful way.

Congratulations! You have just stepped out by faith and made a difference for the kingdom. You have also created a relationship that you can build on, when you come back…of course you will, you just may start a revolution in someone’s life. The short of it is this. Go find someone who really needs the gospel and demonstrate it for them. Don’t rely on human gimmicks or your winning personality. Depend on the spirit and expect God to show up and demonstrate who he is. Put away your gospel gimmicks and bring the life of Jesus to someone who needs it. You’ll never be the same.

Your homey or your king?

Mark 6:1-6

“and they took offense at him.” v. 3

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It’s hard to imagine the Son of God being amazed at anything. But here we see one thing that made him stop and just shake his head in wonder. It’s one thing when people don’t believe. That’s bad enough. But what really got Jesus here was the unbelief of those who seemingly knew him best. Jesus had come to his hometown with his disciples. Apparently his fame had arrived before him. They said, “Where did this man get these things?…How are such mighty works done by his hands? Is not this the carpenter, the son of Mary and brother of James and Joses….?” And they were offended by him. Here’s the amazing thing to me. They didn’t deny his mighty works or his wisdom. But their familiarity with him caused them to be offended. One would think, they would be proud of this small town boy becoming so great and wise. But instead, they were offended…at what? His fame? His power? The very thing that had masses streaming to his doorstep in other places, caused his hometown to reject him. They say familiarity breeds contempt, perhaps it also creates blindness. Perhaps they were offended that this small town boy from Nazareth didn’t stay small. Sometimes that happens. I love small towns. I’ve lived in them all my life. But sometimes small town living creates small thinking. Everything is small and safe. Everybody is in their place. Life is predictable. Jesus would have been fine if he had just stayed home and run the family business. But his calling led him beyond the boundaries of Nazareth. He broke out of the constraints of normalcy and became bigger than life. He busted the curve, shattered the status quo. Suddenly this good ole boy from Nazareth was challenging everyone’s limited expectations and forcing them to look beyond the borders of their comfortable lives. They were offended, not at his power and teachings, but at what he had become. In response, Jesus summed up the matter pretty well. “A prophet is not without honor, except in his hometown and among his relatives and in his own household.” It’s sad when we become so familiar with Jesus today that we no longer believe. We’re often like the people of Nazareth. We’ve read the stories of Jesus, spent our lives in church forming our doctrinal expectations of him and telling ourselves what he will and will not do. By the time we reach adulthood, many believers no longer believe their beliefs. We have become so familiar with Jesus that, like the people of Nazareth, we no longer know him. We get used to our small town Jesus who goes with us to Sunday school. But when he starts calling us beyond ourselves we become offended. “Isn’t this the Jesus who sat with me in Sunday school? What is all this talk of self-sacrifice and walking in the Spirit? Isn’t he that guy the preacher talks about, who loves us like we are and wants us happy? who is this guy claiming to be our king?” and we are offended at him. While the masses are seeking him in hospital rooms and hotel rooms, his church going family is refusing to believe. We want a nice safe, small town Jesus, who keeps his place while we live however we want. As in Nazareth, he can do no mighty work there, and he marvels at our unbelief. Have you and I become too familiar with the Nazarene? Have our religious expectations caused us to be offended by him? Or will we seek to rediscover this Jesus and embrace him for the savior and king he really is?

Don’t trouble the teacher.

Mark 5:35-43

” Your daughter is dead. Why trouble the teacher any longer?” v.35

“Your daughter is dead.” These words pounded like nails into this desperate father’s heart. He stood there in the middle of the street, listening to the echo of his worst nightmare. He had tried so hard to get Jesus there in time. “If he hadn’t stopped to help that cursed woman we could have made it! He could have saved her!” He felt himself imploding under the weight of the dreaded news. The messenger reached to help Jairus to his feet, “Why trouble the teacher any longer?” He said, slowly leading him toward home. You see, to the messenger, it was over. Jesus, the teacher, was too late. Hope was gone. There was nothing left to do but plan the funeral and endure the grief. So this well meaning friend said to Jairus, ‘Why bother the teacher any longer? Perhaps he could have healed her while she was alive, with whatever magic arts he has but what can this mystic do in the face of death?’ They were resigned to fate. Hope was shattered against the rock hard reality of death. If Jesus had been only a teacher, there would have been no reason to seek his help. After all, who needs a teacher when your world has come crashing down? The scripture tells us that Jesus overheard this conversation. Aren’t you glad today, that our Lord overhears our pain and sorrow. He’s always listening in to those dark moments when our worst nightmares are being played out before our eyes. He’s overhearing when the doctor tells the young couple, “I’m sorry but there’s been a miscarriage.” or when worried parents get a late night phone call, “There’s been an accident and it doesn’t look good.” He overhears the long nights of a grieving soul screaming curses into a pillow. He overhears the loved ones trying to make sense of tragedy, with all sorts of clichés about “God’s will”, that usually bounce off the broken heart like pebbles against a gravestone. Jesus overhears our sorrows. Not only did he overhear, but he also overruled. He showed here that is more than a teacher, he is Lord over our darkest moments. In this story Jesus says three things that show who he is when our hearts are broken.

  1. “Do not fear, only believe.” – Grief brings with it, among other things, great amounts of fear. I can imagine Jairus thinking, “How will I go on without my precious daughter?” We think our world has come to an end. We tell ourselves we will never recover. Subconsciously we make plans to be miserable for the rest of our lives. Death has left a hole in our lives that we think could never heal. Jesus told Jairus not to fear but to believe. The one who has power over death, has power over grief as well. Faith is the antidote for fear. As is often said, we don’t know what the future holds but we know who holds the future.
  2. “The child is not dead, but sleeping.” Jesus said this to the professional mourners, whose job it was to weep and wail in time of death. They laughed at him when he said, “She’s just asleep.” From our perspective death is cold and final. It’s the delete button on all our hopes and dreams. To us there is nothing more final than death. Yet Jesus calls it sleep. From his perspective death is the nap before the party. He understands our loss, but also knows that this dream thief, called death, is temporary. He knows because he existed before time with the father, and because now he has died himself, and risen from the dead. When he was crucified he entered into a real death, descended temporarily into hell itself, and rose again in power. This same hope is ours and can fill us with peace even as we stare death in the face.
  3. “Talitha Cumi” which means “Little girl, I say to you arise.” Jesus rose this girl from death with a single word. What does this mean? Jesus, the teacher, would have only been able to heal the sick, but Jesus, the savior, can step into the realm of death and say, “arise”. Even today we have testimony of people being raised from death by his power. Secondly, as mentioned earlier, this means that death is temporary and we who have lost our loved one have the hope of seeing them again, only this time it will be forever. There will be no more separation. No more saying goodbye. No more grieving. Finally, it means that one day each of us will hear his voice saying, “Arise!” Those who have placed their trust in the savior will rise to eternal life, but whose who have rejected him to judgment. We will all discover that he was far more than a magic teacher, or a mystical sage. He was and is Lord of all.

Perhaps today you are facing tragedy. It may be that you have felt the sting of death. A loved one. A marriage. A career. If Jesus were just a teacher, all you could hope to get from him would be advice or possibly comfort. In that case there would be no point in troubling him any longer. Death has come. It’s over. But he is far more than that. He can speak life into your death.  He can bring hope and real healing if you will but trouble him with it.

Making Contact

Mark 5:21-34

“And Jesus perceiving in himself that power had gone out from him, immediately turned about in the crowd and said, “who touched my garments?” v. 30

So, Jesus is pushing his way through the narrow street filled with gawkers, squawkers and mockers, pressing up against him like a can of middle eastern sardines. If you’ve ever been in a crowded airport, trying to meander furiously through the masses on your way to the next flight, you can imagine what this may have been like. To make things worse, Jesus had just received a 911 from Jairus, the synagogue ruler. His daughter was dying and he needed Jesus to come right away. Jesus was in a traffic jam to beat all traffic jams, with a desperate father likely dragging him by the hand, through a sea of perspiration, dust and crowd noise. What a day.  As is often the case, when you’re trying to get somewhere, not only was traffic slow, but right in the middle of this chaotic journey, someone came along with another emergency. A woman, who had been suffering some type of internal bleeding problem for the past twelve years, came up behind Jesus and did the unthinkable. She touched his robe. Problem solved. Bleeding stopped immediately. Then Jesus says the most curious thing: “Who touched my garment?”  “Okay, Jesus maybe you need to get out of the sun”, they must have thought.  Jesus is in a crowd of people, pressing up against him like a crowd leaving a concert, and he wants to know who touched him. Better than that, he said, “Who touched my garments?” meaning the woman didn’t even press against him like everyone else, she just touched the fringe of his robe, and Jesus felt it! What’s up with that? Verse 30 gives us a clue. It says he perceived power going out from him. Why? What was the difference between her touching his robe and a zillion people, including Jairus, pressing up against him? Simple. She touched him by faith. The people pressing against Jesus must have had some serious needs of their own, but he only felt power when she made contact. Her faith released his power. That’s how it works. How often we crowd into church on Sunday, pressing into the presence of God, hoping for a sign that he’s real, but never really touching him. We act like squawkers, gawkers, and mockers, talking about our religious opinions, but never really touching him. We’re pressing up against him, without experiencing a release of his power. You cannot experience Jesus by analyzing him. You have to trust him. And as the woman shows us, even the slightest touch of faith can change your life. There’s more power in a finger tip full of faith than in a whole body of speculation. This means you can spend your whole life analyzing and waiting for sings from God and in the end accomplish nothing. On the other hand one moment of genuine faith can change your life forever.

Go Home

Mark 5:14-20

“Go home to your friends and tell them how much the Lord has done for you.” v.19

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In one afternoon his life had been changed forever. Yesterday he was living his worst nightmare; overrun with hellish spirits, separated from everyone he loved, wishing he could just end it all, but even death seemed to elude him. The demonized man was living the nightmare instead of the dream. Then, in one afternoon, his universe was rocked by the Nazarene. One word from the Lord is more powerful than all the hosts of darkness. It’s no surprise that the man wanted to follow Jesus. You can’t truly experience his love and power and have any less reaction than to go with him. But the man was surprised at Jesus response.

“Lord, thank you for saving me. I will follow you anywhere. Let me go with you. I will do anything.” Jesus response must have floored him. “Go home.” “What? But I want to help you change the world! I want to give something back. Please let me go with you.” Jesus smiles kindly and says, “Go home to your family and tell them what the lord has done for you.” I wonder how the man took this. Why is he sending a wannabe follower home? This story gives me some reflections on what it means to really follow Jesus.

  1. Jesus wasn’t rejecting him, he was directing him. Jesus call was strategic. Sometimes our Lord calls us to stay home when we really want to go out. Some who read this know the feeling of wanting to go do something for the Lord, only to be told, “You’re needed at home now.” A woman I grew up with in my church, we’ll call her Jean, experienced this. She had always wanted to be a missionary overseas. But because she was needed at home to take care of her ailing mother, she was never able to fulfill that dream. But in her church and community God used her mightily as a bright and shining light to many. She supported me and many others who felt a call into ministry. She accepted the call to minister at home and did it beautifully. We have to understand that the Lord has a strategy for reaching the world, and wherever he calls you is a vital part of it. Sometimes when we want to go, but cannot, we can feel rejected. The demoniac could have felt that way. But the Lord was not rejecting him, he was directing him to go home where he was needed the most and tell what God had done. I love traveling around the world preaching the good news. But I am always mindful that my primary mission field is my home. What good is it to cross the Sahara with the gospel if I can’t take it across the street, or even down the hall to my loved ones?
  2. Jesus wasn’t telling him to stay home, but to return home.

Second, Jesus directive was missional. He wasn’t calling him to go home and sit on the couch. He was calling him to go tell what God had done. God was not calling him to stay home and feel sorry for himself, or become comfortable. He was calling him to return home and get to work for the gospel. Friends, Too many of us quite frankly, feel called to stay home and do nothing. Whenever I talk about overseas work someone says, ” I Feel called to stay home because we have plenty of needs here.” “Great” I say, “What are you doing to meet the needs?” Sometimes the response is disappointing, “Uhm, well, uh ya see, well, it’s kinda… I uh well…” With all those wells they must have a deep ministry. If you feel called to minister at home, then minister at home. Don’t sit on the couch of blessed assurance. Get out there in your neighborhood and help populate heaven.

  1. Jesus was about to do a second healing.

Jesus call was a call to healing. Jesus always calls us to wholeness. This man had been delivered from a legion of demons, but his heart needed a second healing. He had lost his family and friends. Now he had a chance to go back home and reconnect. What a joyful homecoming that would be! What healing could take place. Many of us aren’t allowed to go from home because God intends to do a similar healing in our lives. Sadly, I have seen people run to mission trips and ministry in order to escape the pain of home.  “Are you running to the great commission, or just running away from a troubled life?” is a question that often needs to be asked. The Lord wants you and me to be healthy and whole. Sometimes we have to deal with the brokenness in our home before we can deal with a broken world. Don’t be the pastor who hides at the church to avoid being a spouse or parent. Sometimes you have to leave your home to follow Jesus, but you never have to neglect them. Go home and heal the broken who are there.

  1. The gospel is always about coming home.

Finally, the greatest reason to go home, is because that is what the gospel is about. The gospel is an invitation to return home. The prodigal who has wandered off onto the far country, gets to come home, Philemon’s servant leaves the prison and is reunited, the demoniac says goodbye to the cemetery and comes home to tell what great things the Lord has done. There is no greater homecoming than when a person simply says, “Lord, I’ve run away from you long enough. I need you in my life. Please save me and take me back home. Is the Lord calling you home today? Are you ready to go ?

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