This is not a test, it is a testament. A testament about how God wants us to live, and maybe an answer for those who question something in the bible. All of us face trials at one time or another. Many of us face multiple trials every now and then. Do we have the faith to face them? Do we need help to face them? Do we know where to turn for that help?
Do we TRUST GOD?
God blesses us in so many ways, he gives us the chance to reach out and make new experiences and grow from them. To meet new people that can impact our lives. All it takes is trust, and when we trust God magical things happen. Things that are beyond reason or what we think is possible.
God gave Debbie and I a chance this winter, we trusted him even when family members told us they were afraid. We trusted God and took a trip to the Holy Land. The trip itself was an act of trust.
I signed up for a lottery for a chance to buy tickets to go to the Holy Land, on a Friday I received an email telling me that we did not get chosen, for whatever reason just 3 days later on a Monday I received an email that stated they had an opening and we could join them if we chose to. Immediately there were concerns about how to pay for such a trip. There was no doubt that we wanted to go but it still had to be paid for. Again I learned to trust God, on Wednesday just 2 days later an answer came in the mail by way of a statement on some investments we had made 10 years earlier that we had forgotten about. This trip has impacted me in a way that will be with me the rest of my life. More on that in a minute.
Today’s Gospel talks about a man who was sick for 38 years until one day Jesus walked by. Jesus had pity on him and cured him. Then the Jews asked the man how it was that he was carrying his mat on the Sabbath, he told them the story of being cured. Being so wrapped up in themselves they asked him who cured him because it was the Sabbath and he should not work on the Sabbath. How narrow minded, not be happy that a man afflicted for 38 years was now cured, only be concerned that he was cured on the Sabbath. And wanting to know who did it so he could be punished. Were they jealous that they did not help the man? Did they consider him a sinner and not worthy of help or forgiveness? I see a lack of trust and a narrow minded view personally.
We have all heard the term cannot see the forest through the trees. We all get like that sometimes. I felt that way today until my brothers and sisters from our Holy Land cured me. I had something coming up that I just was not feeling good about attending, I was narrow minded, “What was in this for me?” Not looking for the big picture, not opening my eyes to what God may have planned. How narrow minded can you get? Just like the Jews I was not willing to let go and let God be or do what he has planned and just trust.
Then came my friends from our trip. But friends does not describe them properly. They are more than friends. THEY ARE FAMILY, in all ways possible. We trusted God and he rewarded us with relationships that are different than any most of us have ever experienced. We shared a spiritual, emotional, and physical journey together. In the 10 days we were together we joined our hearts in a way that only God can understand for he put us together just for this purpose I believe. He put us together so we can help each other in this life.
Nothing in this world happens by chance. In the weeks since our return we have been there for each other, we have faced deaths of family members, problems with relationships, life challenges for us and our children. Many things that all of us face each and every day only now, our family has a way to reach out to each other for help, something we did not have before. WE ARE BROTHERS AND SISTERS in a real sense to each other. We share good news and we ask each other for help in prayer. Today I needed help, and just like I had offered prayers and help to others within 60 minutes I had received so much love and caring I was in tears. God reached out to me through these blessed brothers and sisters to heal my heart and mind. To put me at ease, to let me TRUST God.
I think that is why Jesus called his disciples brothers. He has shared so much with them in his journey here on earth that his human side connected with them just like I feel connected with my new family. We are connected by LOVE. Remember Faith, Hope, and Love but the greatest of these is love! What a wonderful gift to receive in this life, the gift of love. And it all started in a real sense in a small home in Nazareth when a woman told and angel to let it be done according to God’s will. An act of love, life giving love, love that will last for generations. And so today I say thank you to my special FAMILY, you helped me today in my time of need. I love you and cherish you, and will continue to pray for all of us that we NEVER lose this special gift of LOVE. And I TRUST that God will never let us lose it.
God Bless all of us.