Though the story is not new, each Easter, Christians throughout the world celebrate and remember Jesus, the Messiah who had suffered on the cross for our sins so that we can be free from it. I like the drama and felt the role of Mary, Mather and Jared were exceptionally good. The one that truly connects with me is Mary - her facial expression and acting skills drew me into the scene completely as if we were transported back 2000 years ago.........
Her love for Jesus, trust in HIM and reliance on his mercy and love to save her brother, Lazareth. Jared, on the other hand was street smart, having to fend for himself since young and somehow blame God for taking away his parents. He also felt jealous that so many people in his village, his brother, mother and even Mary (the woman he loved) were all obsessed with Jesus, taking away attention that he clamoured after.
My takeaway - sometimes in our lives here on Earth, we humans may seem to suffer many form of injustice especially those that we were not responsible for but has to bear it - the faults of our parents, a strange illness befalls on us, etc. Then we compare ourselves to others who may not have a strong faith in God and they were much better off. And we ask, why Lord are you doing this to me? It is unfair!
Nothing is by accident, everything is designed by the hands of God. His ways are higher than our way and his stroke of our fate is beyond what our human intelligence can comprehend. To hold on to the faith till the end requires courage, perseverance and continuous faith.
So many testimonials I heard touches my heart - from bondage to freedom, from sickness to health, from bankruptcy to wealth, etc. One thing is common in all of them. They decide to change their perception - abandon their old way of looking at things and yield completely to God. For man, that is lowering down the ego, something that may not be easy for many men since we were brought up by family, societal pressure to upkeep the manhood. Something gotta give somewhere and these people decide enough is enough and allow God to take over.
Are you afraid to let go and worry that you are no longer in control of your situation? What if letting go would resolve your problems? It may seem uncertain to many since their attention tend to focus on the problems on hand, magnifying it by the days and weeks, spiralling downwards into stress, anxiety and possibly depression.
God is not only high up but also look at things from a much higher angle than us, his creations. He knows well enough the pain and sufferings we go through is a short one compared to the eternity, salvation at the end but we mere mortals sometimes struggled to understand this. Instead, we choose to wallow in our complaints, ranting it off , hurling abusive languages, resorting to drinks/gamble to numb the pain. God allow us to do all these not because he did not care for us but because of his LOVE for us. He loves us so much that he gives us the choice to choose and if we chose to stay away from HIM, moving closer to Satan by indulging in all these unhealthy activities, he does not intervene too.
He wants us to realise over time that what true love really means not by coercion nor authority but by his true deeds of unconditional love. He does not impose threats nor send us reminders to worship him but walk in his ways to demonstrate his deeds of mercy, compassion and kindness towards humanity. His exemplary acts , one after another is what we can learn from.
Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord,
Acts 3:19 Repent in the Greek strong concordance means to change our mind, to have a radical shift in our attitude. I do not think it has anything to do with feeling remorse. God knows the sins we had committed in our lives and does not harp on that but by his act of sacrifice on the Cross, he has demonstrated his forgiveness for all of us.
In Matthew 9:4-5 Knowing their thoughts, Jesus said, "Why do you entertain evil thoughts in your hearts?Which is easier: to say, 'Your sins are forgiven,' or to say, 'Get up and walk'? He told the paralytic to get up and walk and indeed the miracle of healing was instantaneous. Saying to get up and walk also imply a sense of HOPE for the paralytic who was burying himself with doubts and self pity and low self esteem for the condition he was in. Get up and walk provides possibilities and not harp on the problems that we have. Jesus wants us to have a change in our perception, however difficult or unbelievable it may be for us.
"Do not let your hearts be troubled. You believe in God; believe also in me. John 14:1 - When we have problems, we are troubled by it, ruminating in negative thoughts all day and all night. Saying your sins are forgiven would do little to help the situation but lifting us up