Vined Smiles, 20JAN – #527



Vined Smiles, 20JAN

Was great to visit a friend today who was moved into a retirement community – she feels like a fish out of water… Another friend and I hit the road and she was thrilled to see us. We were blessed to share this time together… We also felt like we escaped and retreated from our busyness to go…

Our friend misses being in her element.  As she is new, she’s learning the ropes and has struggled with a few things you can imagine. It’s been a shock to be plucked out of her routine and her home…  She would rather be home – but better yet, she would probably love to be sitting at camp playing cards with us women’s retreat folks… Wouldn’t you all love to be taking a break at camp right now? So the three of us enjoyed a retreat moment with a few hands of cards… It made her roommate happy too… Her face lit up when we talked about all our friends…

A shining star beamed in just before we were going to leave, she was an aide for the night who was from the other side of the building, and she explained about herself and it was a great match for the night, I was relieved that as soon as my friend feared this new situation after we left, that instantly here came this appointed helper… God provides… He surely watches over all of us…

We prayed before we left and I invited this new aide and the neighbor’s family member (who had just come in the room) to pray with us… As my friend chimed in on prayers, I can’t tell you how blessed the Lord has made me feel to just be able to openly pray and for me to hear others heartfelt prayers… I’m always just appreciative of being open… I also can’t tell you how unreal and blessed it is for me to feel free to sing too… My friend was thrilled about singing and I “just happened” to have song sheets in my car that I take to the nursing home once a month… NOTHING seems to lighten a room better than singing… The neighbor’s face beamed in contentment too as we sang along joyfully… I started to tear up thinking how much it means to me that I get to sing, that the Lord uses me in that way – “whoda thunk” I always tell myself – I know music is a gift, and no one cares if we sing off key in a nursing home, no one cares what you sing, they just want to keep singing… What’s the next song?!

I pray that our friend  gains strength and shares her special self. I pray people see those hidden gifts in her (and all people) and not what folks can’t do… God certainly sees all the possibilities in each of us… God puts a song in our heart, and a smile on our face… God knows how to bless us with people into our lives…

We have an extensive church family… The thought that I envision pairs of us travelling together to go visit folks makes me smile in advance… Our church family is an outside the building kind of family… Our branch of the family is a little twisted, LOL, but the vine pushes thru these folks to each other… My church family makes me smile…

I know I’ve been blessed in witnessing this tremendous spirit that is vined thru smiles…

Thanks God for letting us see Your SMILES…

The JOY of music is HOPE, 19JAN – #526



The JOY of music is HOPE, 19JAN

I’m copiously reading a lot of scriptures about the Lord protecting us – there ARE a lot of scriptures reminding us how He will protect us… about all HIS ways to comfort us so that we can comfort others…

As ALWAYS, I’m ALWAYS singing… in the car, in the store, in the church, in the nursing home, and especially in my head – with or without the earbuds – music that comes out of your ears provides your mental tabernacle of sanctuary, an ever-expanding sanctuary to feel the PEACE of the Lord. After singing in band on Sunday my memory will resonate like a bell those very special catchy verses that the Lord has laid on my heart. These verses are for the past and surely they are for the present and they definitely are for the future when we will continue to walk with the Lord.

I think music is one of the biggest gifts ever –  even when people are physically or emotionally in the deepest worst places, there still can be a song in our heads bursting or seeping out of our hearts… It doesn’t matter the depth of human intelligence or the languages that we speak, because music is universal… We have soothing songs in our dreams when we sleep, we have songs of heartache to keep us company in bad times, and we have songs of sheer JOY…

If God has taken care of the littlest birds with songs of joy, sorrow, and warning, then surely He will take care of us! (Matthew 6)

We have songs to sing about mercy, love and SALVATION…

With all the hardships thru the ages, thousands and thousands of years, music has continued to delight and direct us – and it must be because the Lord wants to hear us in a state of trying to find BLISS – to be in an active state of BEING STILL – and to be soothing ourselves (psalm 131) calming and quieting ourselves by trusting the Lord – knowing He is present – to be content in ourselves…

This state of looking for comfort is so that we are able to be comforting others (2 Corinthians 1)… and when we look at others we can be grateful for our blessings…

It all means we believe in HOPE…

There’s a TRUE JOY, that we have HOPE…

The JOY of music is the JOY of Hope…

“Put your hope in the Lord now and forever more”…


Psalm 131
My heart is not proud, Lord,
    my eyes are not haughty;
I do not concern myself with great matters or things too wonderful for me.
But I have calmed and quieted myself,
I am like a weaned child with its mother; like a weaned child I am content.

Israel, put your hope in the Lord
both now and forevermore.

Psalm 136:7-8

Though I walk in the midst of trouble,
you preserve my life.
You stretch out your hand against the anger of my foes;
with your right hand you save me.
The Lord will vindicate me;
your love, Lord, endures forever

Psalm 130

Out of the depths I cry to you,Lord;
Lord, hear my voice.
Let your ears be attentive
to my cry for mercy.

If you, Lord, kept a record of sins,
Lord, who could stand?
But with you there is forgiveness,
so that we can, with reverence, serve you.

P.S.  I Bow My Heart to Sing, 19JAN

Of the praise songs we sing in church, this is probably the best line I get to sing – from this Paul Baloche song Your Mercy: “I bow my heart to sing” – i actually bow dip and bow my heart – how could I not?

God gives us Mercy and He blesses us. We are called by God to know we have received God’s mercy. We are called by that and know that He loves us!

Beautiful song…

Beautiful feeling to be loved.

God Knows 3AM Silver Linings…, 17JAN – #525



God Knows 3AM Silver Linings…, 17JAN

Two Facebook posts with scripture in between:

1AM – I can’t shut my brain off now, sigh, fell asleep then awoke… The only consolation to this 1AM is that I heard and saw Christmas the crab eating, he hadn’t moved for a week or more I thought…. I REALLY thought maybe he’s molting again (or worse…) – but he is OK! YAY!

As for everything else most seriously swirling in my head, I ask our prayer warriors to hyperdrive some prayers to folks I know struggling… I appreciate and love that community that keeps us all together… I appreciate the net of community… Thanks

1:30AM – I read some scriptures from last year VBS:

God is with you… At Home:

“You see me when I travel and when I rest at home. You know everything I do.” (Psalm 139:3)

God is with you… When You’re Confused:

“And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don’t be troubled or afraid.” (John 14:27)

God is with you… In Dark Times:

“Even when I walk through the darkest valley, I will not be afraid, for you are close beside me.” (Psalm 23:4)

God is with you… Because God Loves You:

“And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” (Matthew 28:20)

2AM – a flurry of activity that required my awakeness… Made me forget my problems too…

3AM – I updated Facebook with a new praise post: “3AM does have its advantages,  besides seeing the crab, I was awake to chat with my friend on messenger and see a photo of her brand new grandchild. I was awake to give my daughter a hug who had woke up from being on the couch, then I made her lunch, AND THEN very urgently I discovered that the refrigerator has stopped working sometime during the night, YIKES, and I was able to rescue a few hundred dollars worth of food which is crucial in the life of teenagers! WHEW And I realized that  my unexpected medical reimbursement of $400 is probably going to go straight to a new fridge, earmarked by God earlier in the day I guess, geez… WOW, that’s timing…

SO…  DON’T discount Silver Linings….  To every 3AM there is a purpose, under heaven….  (but I don’t think I should have eaten half a pint of the premium chocolate ice cream that didn’t want to throw away, yummy but bad, but yummy)…”

Yup, now at 3:30 I’m still not sleepy, but I’m more at PEACE… Modified Serenity prayer: No, I can’t change the things I can’t change – my friends both that are in the hospital and headed towards surgery and in strife of life are still in strife, but YES, I can pray for them and ask others to pray… I can change the things I can change – especially when it’s my attitude that needs adjusting… And I pray for the wisdom to find the PEACE in between…

My Lord, thanks for reminding me to look for YOUR PEACE… YOU are my PEACE…

I will not be afraid, for you are close beside me.” (Psalm 23:4)


Signed Sealed Delivered, I’m Yours Lord, 15Jan – #524



Signed Sealed Delivered, I’m Yours Lord, 15Jan

Romans 13:1 “Let every person be in subjection to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God and those which exist are established by God.”

Matthew 22:21 Jesus said: “Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s; and to God the things that are God’s.” 

Render to God the things that are God’s – well that’s a lot – that’s EVERYTHING for His purpose… That includes our time, mind, purpose.

Our time – and what we do – belong to God. He’s in control, but that doesn’t mean we get a cushy lifestyle to our standards… Some may say it’s debatable whether the Lord is a micromanager, yet we know angels work the system… His angels are tasked for work we can’t even dream of, we have no idea, but sometimes we see the result of tweaking the system.

Our mind – we need to focus on God’s will. We also have to be willing to be tweaked by the system. I’m not saying we understand it all, but we have to be listening to be shepherded.  “I am the good shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me. . . . My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me” John 10:14, 27

Our purpose – we need to listen, and hear the call to be “fishers of men” type disciples… We need to walk humbly, love mercy, and seek justice for all God’s children (Micah 6:8)… Perhaps the most important start is to share the Word by action and voice… Plant seeds – let God water…  LOVE others as God commands… LOVE GOD…

“Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s; and to God the things that are God’s.”

Love does make the world go around because LOVE is from God… Love is the good stuff that belongs to God – it’s for sharing!


Dotted Line, 14JAN – #523



Dotted Line, 14JAN

A friend of mine is in the hospital for a reason that’s different than why she was delivered there, but angels seen to have tweaked the system and an unexpected life-saving diagnosis came “out of the blue”…

Maybe it’s a linear solid path that got her there but we only sometimes see the dotted lines… maybe we only see a roundabout path…

Either way all paths point to God being in control…

Thanks Lord for the safety net, thanks for the save!

I have been blessed so many times by the saving grace of the Lord – both the ultimate Grace and the little graces along the way – so many that I don’t even know a fraction of them – but as Peter reminds us we are forever to keep looking to the Lord and not to ourselves – I am to not rush the Lord – I am to be content – we are to remember that the Lord has us in the palm of His Hand!

523 be content dotted line.PNG

Expect Nothing, Gain it All, 13Jan – #522



Expect Nothing, Gain it All, 13Jan

Easter, all the world is behind us, all is open before us…

Easter, the cross cracked open the path to our future…

Our future’s eternal LIFE with the Lord – STARTS NOW…

This free-flowing LIGHT of the future can guide us thru the present – it is the WORD – the messages that Jesus brought and the SPIRIT that Jesus shared… Jesus came to LIGHT our way – to LIGHTen our load – Jesus is the life – the truth – the way…

Michael Card’s book on Luke (which I just deLIGHTfully finished) reminds us that the disciples had “no expectations” for Jesus to be risen after crucifixion, even though they heard it predicted directly from Jesus on many many occasions…. How could they not understand when it actually happened? Well they didn’t until the LIGHT hit their eyes and opened their hearts… God’s timing… Well – we, individually and collectively, fail to comprehend that too… But when the disciples heard then saw RISEN Jesus Himself??? WOW – was not that presumably the brightest LIGHT in their darkness????… WOW… WOW… AMAZEMENT…

Are we amazed when Jesus LIGHTS our way? WOW…  AMAZEMENT… From NO expectations then gaining EVERYTHING – blinded by the brightest LIGHT. Verse 45: “Then He opened their minds so they could understand the Scriptures.”

LIGHT, can you see it? I pray you find and focus on it… God knows our needs.

God’s timing is His, it’s purposefully His own… Minds are closed until God’s Will is understood… Isn’t that what happens to us as well? Are we blinded by dark until we see the LIGHT? Does the LIGHT becomes brighter when it is focused as well? Either we see instantly or we see slowly – the LIGHT crashing in or creeping in – both ways illuminate the truth of Jesus, He came for us to see the LIGHT…

The LIGHT is the only way to chase away the darkness –  “repentance for the forgiveness of sins will be preached in his name to all nations starting in Jerusalem”.

LIGHT traveled into the disciples hearts in Jerusalem, and then it expanded out into the world. We are called to be part of that LIGHT journey and help it keep moving and illuminating. LIGHT travels and bends when reflected in and thru the hearts of those open to receive it… Reflected LIGHT is bright too…

The last chapter of Luke, the gospel of amazement, amazes even more – Jesus left in ascension while still blessing them, He is still blessing us continuously thru His teaching and thru the Holy Spirit, whom was sent as “another”: “51 While he was blessing them, he left them and was taken up into heaven. 52 Then they worshiped him and returned to Jerusalem with great joy. 53 And they stayed continually at the temple, praising God.”

JOY – Jesus instilled JOY for the journey ahead… JOY carries thru hardship, the journey will not always be easy, but the journey will continue… The JOY from within sustains because it’s from God WITHIN… The kingdom of God is the kingdom of the heart… The LOVE of God for us brings us to Jesus and THRU Him we are blessed… Jesus blesses WHILE on the journey, we can carry that LIGHT with us ALWAYS…

LIGHT travels. His LIGHT illuminates.

LIGHT travels. His LIGHT is the weight-lifting gift we can share. We can lighten other’s loads by sharing the message of forgiveness…

EASTER – Expect nothing – Gain EVERYTHING…

Follow His LIGHT – JESUS knows the Way…


Luke 24 (the Emmaus road witnesses run back to tell the others they had seen the risen Jesus…)

33 They got up and returned at once to Jerusalem. There they found the Eleven and those with them, assembled together 34 and saying, “It is true! The Lord has risen and has appeared to Simon.” 35 Then the two told what had happened on the way, and how Jesus was recognized by them when he broke the bread.

Jesus Appears to the Disciples

36 While they were still talking about this, Jesus himself stood among them and said to them, “Peace be with you.”

37 They were startled and frightened, thinking they saw a ghost. 38 He said to them, “Why are you troubled, and why do doubts rise in your minds? 39 Look at my hands and my feet. It is I myself! Touch me and see; a ghost does not have flesh and bones, as you see I have.”

40 When he had said this, he showed them his hands and feet. 41 And while they still did not believe it because of joy and amazement, he asked them, “Do you have anything here to eat?” 42 They gave him a piece of broiled fish, 43 and he took it and ate it in their presence.

44 He said to them, “This is what I told you while I was still with you: Everything must be fulfilled that is written about me in the Law of Moses, the Prophets and the Psalms.”

45 Then he opened their minds so they could understand the Scriptures. 46 He told them, “This is what is written: The Messiah will suffer and rise from the dead on the third day, 47 and repentance for the forgiveness of sins will be preached in his name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. 48 You are witnesses of these things. 49 I am going to send you what my Father has promised; but stay in the city until you have been clothed with power from on high.”

The Ascension of Jesus

50 When he had led them out to the vicinity of Bethany, he lifted up his hands and blessed them. 51 While he was blessing them, he left them and was taken up into heaven. 52 Then they worshiped him and returned to Jerusalem with great joy.53 And they stayed continually at the temple, praising God.

Emmaus Hat Trick, 09JAN – #521



Emmaus Hat Trick, 09JAN

I am grateful for a new program book for United Methodist Women for this year which talks about sacred spaces for encountering God. It’s a series on scriptures that relate to our current lives. It even includes coloring pages for each program. So tonight’s program is to talk about the Walk to Emmaus scripture, where Jesus appeared as a stranger along the road that first Easter morning to folks who were distraught from him being removed from the tomb, they did not realize they were walking with HIM… Later on when they realized it was Jesus they recounted that their hearts had been burning the whole time while He had been discussing the scriptures with them…

It’s our opportunity to realize in our daily lives when we are encountering God.

SO, it amazes me that this walk to Emmaus scripture program was open in the book when I pulled it out of the bag. And in my personal Gospel reading it is the next scripture where my bookmark sits in Michael Card’s book on Luke.  AND of course it’s ALSO the theme retreat I attended in the fall. So there are no coincidences, we call them God sightings in VBS.

I am very grateful how our United Methodist women ladies last month took poinsettias and Christmas cards to our many of our Homebound and persons of concern…  I look forward to hearing these stories tonight. And I appreciate how witnessing their walks strengthens my walk as well – I love hearing how the Lord’s Word and His Love is spread…

God knows when to open ears and eyes to see feel hear HIS love – life itself is more than coincidences and Hat tricks when the maker of the hat is the one wearing it!

13 And, behold, two of them went that same day to a village called Emmaus, which was from Jerusalem about threescore furlongs.

14 And they talked together of all these things which had happened.

15 And it came to pass, that, while they communed together and reasoned, Jesus himself drew near, and went with them.

16 But their eyes were holden that they should not know him.

17 And he said unto them, What manner of communications are these that ye have one to another, as ye walk, and are sad?

18 And the one of them, whose name was Cleopas, answering said unto him, Art thou only a stranger in Jerusalem, and hast not known the things which are come to pass there in these days?

19 And he said unto them, What things? And they said unto him, Concerning Jesus of Nazareth, which was a prophet mighty in deed and word before God and all the people:

20 And how the chief priests and our rulers delivered him to be condemned to death, and have crucified him.

21 But we trusted that it had been he which should have redeemed Israel: and beside all this, to day is the third day since these things were done.

22 Yea, and certain women also of our company made us astonished, which were early at the sepulchre;

23 And when they found not his body, they came, saying, that they had also seen a vision of angels, which said that he was alive.

24 And certain of them which were with us went to the sepulchre, and found it even so as the women had said: but him they saw not.

25 Then he said unto them, O fools, and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken:

26 Ought not Christ to have suffered these things, and to enter into his glory?

27 And beginning at Moses and all the prophets, he expounded unto them in all the scriptures the things concerning himself.

28 And they drew nigh unto the village, whither they went: and he made as though he would have gone further.

29 But they constrained him, saying, Abide with us: for it is toward evening, and the day is far spent. And he went in to tarry with them.

30 And it came to pass, as he sat at meat with them, he took bread, and blessed it, and brake, and gave to them.

31 And their eyes were opened, and they knew him; and he vanished out of their sight.

32 And they said one to another, Did not our heart burn within us, while he talked with us by the way, and while he opened to us the scriptures?

33 And they rose up the same hour, and returned to Jerusalem, and found the eleven gathered together, and them that were with them,

34 Saying, The Lord is risen indeed, and hath appeared to Simon.

35 And they told what things were done in the way, and how he was known of them in breaking of bread.


Float Forward, 07 Jan – #520


boo 520


Float Forward, 07 Jan

Best deepest movie look – Boo Radley – Robert Duvall in “To Kill a Mockingbird”… Oh… his deepest look of deep caring towards the child Scout, the smile in his eyes beams from His love … And you can feel the movie actors “exude expressiveness” a great saying my friend wrote… Yeah, God’s LOVE exudes expressiveness…

Yeah, seriously such a deep book and movie, glad my daughter got to watch it with me… we love Netflix… I heard the movie lines as fresh to my ears tonight, having watched it so long ago… I knew each scene coming up but I acutely heard much more this time – and now I can’t help but pick up on the scripture too:

“Let the dead bury the dead”… The sheriff would see that “justice” was served – like the universe correcting itself – letting the town try to heal – and also keeping shy Boo out of the spotlight… Essentially telling all to keep moving forward… (And DON’T kill a Mockingbird…)

The scripture in the movie is adapted from Luke 9, where he actually details Jesus telling a disciple candidate (and us) to stop and drop everything hindering and follow Him… the cost of following Jesus is not looking back… The task at hand is working now for God: “but you go and proclaim the kingdom of God.”

It costs us our personal will to follow Jesus, we are instead to look to God’s Will for us… And our lives sometimes are warning beacons to others and sometimes we are the sweet sounds of a singing mockingbird… Raising the praise…

We have tough choices though, we are NOT to choose human desire over spiritual work…. Oh, a tough spot, this is why we have to cling to the cross for each wrong decision or when we are holding back even if God says “go”…. Or simply because we are human – God knows… We need Jesus and God placed HIM here for us… God’s word and God’s will… God’s way…

Plow forward by looking forward… Timely message for a new year, a new life, a renewal of purpose each day – and if we stumble each day, let’s grab for that cross once again… the song lyric is: “the world behind me, the cross before me… No turning back”

And remember, the cross is made of wood, so even if you think your drowning just grab it, it will float… Jesus floats…  Float forward and let the current carry you… God’s way…

Thank you Jesus for the call, thank you for the saving grace… Thank YOU for YOU.



57 As they were walking along the road, a man said to him, “I will follow you wherever you go.”

58 Jesus replied, “Foxes have dens and birds have nests, but the Son of Man has no place to lay his head.”

59 He said to another man, “Follow me.”

But he replied, “Lord, first let me go and bury my father.”

60 Jesus said to him, “Let the dead bury their own dead, but you go and proclaim the kingdom of God.”

61 Still another said, “I will follow you, Lord; but first let me go back and say goodbye to my family.”

62 Jesus replied, “No one who puts a hand to the plow and looks back is fit for service in the kingdom of God.”

Luke 23, the Last Breath of Jesus, 05Jan – #519



Luke 23, the Last Breath of Jesus, 05Jan

Luke 23 – I’m nearing the end of Luke’s gospel in Michael Card’s “Biblical Imagination” series book… So many lessons in such few verses (posted at the end of this page) near Jesus’s last breath…  Luke’s writing is a way to teach us in heart-convicting lessons shared with astonishment and always careful watch…

In verse 39, the criminals scene shows us God’s mercy – the repentance comes with acknowledging one’s guilt, and the saving comes from understanding and asking Jesus to remember us… Jesus’s continuous ministry message is that He is doing all this by His Father’s command – He will not lose anyone that His Father brings to Him…. If you are drawn to Jesus, then know that God Himself has brought you there! We come for gifted Mercy… Jesus knows our needs, we are led there but it’s up to us to ask, to reach. When we ask Jesus for Mercy, He will tell us that we already have it… (v39-43)

The darkness scene of the crucifixion shows us God’s pain (v44) – the Sun failed – the Son was felled – God’s scale of grief to lose a child?… Jesus’s scale of grief to not reach each lost child of God?… No one could imagine God’s trade off – the human life of Jesus for fulfilling His desire to reach all of us… Painful purpose…

The Temple’s torn curtain scene shows us God’s promise (v45) – Jesus was and IS the answer. Jesus is the promise that God gave us to show that there is no barrier to worship Him. We have a direct link. The curtain that tore was more than a physical and ceremonial event, it was like a foot thick and it instantly split apart… That indicates miracle but what Jesus truly opened for us was THE WAY HOME… God’s promise to bring us under His wing.

The centurion scene shows us it’s never too late to accept Jesus (v47). The man integral in execution was still saved… He was saveable, we are saveable too… NOTHING we do will keep us away from God’s plan to correct and cherish His Children… We are called to be in God’s plan.

The dispersing crowd scene (v48) shows us God’s path for us to see the light out of the darkness…  The massive crowds have seen the darkness of brutal death, then see the darkness of the deepest night… Convinced now that it was no longer an average crucifixion, they were silenced.  They beat their chests in the understanding that something real had happened… If their conviction is felt so sharply here – their darkness SO DARK… How could we NOT imagine our inner darkness too, our deepest pain and doubts…. Where is OUR faith in dark times?

The women on the hill scene shows us steadfast faith (v49) their faith and God’s faith in us… They would have seen the dark too, but they stayed there waiting and watching… They were the ones who travelled with Jesus and were ALWAYS watching… These women became integral in the early voice of the Christian church because they were there. Women who showed the world how to be bold in their presence, in their silence and in their sharing…  We can use these examples as women and men today – to remember that we are called to witness and share…

We are not always understanding this world, we are just visitors, workers in these fields, but ALWAYS we can be watching and be on the ready to move physically and be moved emotionally and to be witness to others of God’s faithfulness – of God’s plan…

God’s Faith in us is that we too will see the LIGHT.

The death of Jesus brings His everlasting life and ours…. And this brings to us OUR chance to witness the commitment of the Lord to us.

Luke’s gospel has one more chapter, I can’t wait to read it…. I suggest that we already know how the contrast will be SO HUGE – not silence – not darkness – but instead, on Easter and forever more, there will be an explosion of sound and LIGHT… Hear the Good News spreading and behold those that see the LIGHT.

After the last human breath of Jesus, we pray to hear the next news of Jesus rising, wait for it to pour into our ears and eyes – to feel its healing to our broken souls – and to speak it as witnesses thru our own mouths…

Easter feels like it is just a faith breath away… It is… Behold the next breathe…


Luke 23:

39 One of the criminals who hung there hurled insults at him: “Aren’t you the Messiah? Save yourself and us!”40 But the other criminal rebuked him. “Don’t you fear God,” he said, “since you are under the same sentence? 41 We are punished justly, for we are getting what our deeds deserve. But this man has done nothing wrong.”

42 Then he said, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.”

43 Jesus answered him, “Truly I tell you, today you will be with me in paradise.”

The Death of Jesus

44 It was now about noon, and darkness came over the whole land until three in the afternoon, 45 for the sun stopped shining. And the curtain of the temple was torn in two.46 Jesus called out with a loud voice, “Father, into your hands I commit my spirit.” When he had said this, he breathed his last.

47 The centurion, seeing what had happened, praised God and said, “Surely this was a righteous man.” 48 When all the people who had gathered to witness this sight saw what took place, they beat their breasts and went away. 49 But all those who knew him, including the women who had followed him from Galilee, stood at a distance, watching these things.

Jesus Betrayed by Apathy, 03Jan – #518



Jesus Betrayed by Apathy, 03Jan

I’m reading the last bits of Luke about Jesus’s many trials by the Jews and the Romans, it’s interesting to me that the further up the political chain that He gets paraded in front of, it’s just that, a parade…, less substance more show, the rulers don’t want to deal with figuring out what’s really going on…. They really DON’T want to get the real story as it will cost them their lifestyle and power…. And Pilate and Herod want to quiet everything (and maybe wait for an entertaining show)….

Jesus was innocent, but suffered worst of all… Luke tells us of hearings and trials – and thru them Jesus was who He was: a man given a mission… Jesus never hid… Jesus was exposed – was on task – to show the world that He had a message to share – and to show He suffered to understand our suffering…

Whatever the masses construed, Jesus’s silence to Herod indicated there was no defense for what the spiritually-blind could not or did not want to see….  That makes sense – that it didn’t matter what Jesus did, His presence in front of those apathetic hot potato-passing rulers hit on their pre-conceived notion of TROUBLE. Trouble was stirring up the mobs and that was politically bad… But stirring up the mobs was why Jesus came… His coming of course turned the world upside down… It still does… Jesus still reaches to the mobs, still wants to shake up those who are ignorant of their sins, sometimes in silence and sometimes in blatant calling out… as intense in both ways…

As many have been made aware of, beginning a Christian journey means trouble for one’s ignorance… Apathy has to be sacrificed. Beginning and continuing the walk with Jesus is the beginning of awareness of what troubled Him… Continuing the walk with Jesus is to seek justice, love mercy, and especially to walk humbly… Micah 6:8

It’s hot potato passing all over again, we want to preserve our happy existence and pass off the world’s problems to someone else… But that’s not seeking justice… And the evil that permeates the world is not new, we have to fight the right fights… It’s not unusual for not knowing where to start, we are ALL just wanting the best life we can get, but it’s true, I hate to say, many still turn a blind eye to why Jesus came… It’s not hard to simply ignore the outside world, that’s kinda easy, but it IS hard to venture past our own comfort zones… Jesus’ comfort is much more comforting than our worldly comfort zones – it has to be – how could it not?

I have no answers here except to keep walking the narrow path laid out for us… I do know that constantly God pushes us out of our comfort zones… Yet remember that we not alone… He equips us with the tools He has already given us… He sets us into faithful communities to support each other… We are called in the Great Commission to keep Jesus’s spirit alive and moving… To be the hands and feet of God, we have to wrap our heads around the hard work… Stirring up the people with Jesus’s teaching… His message will always be betrayed by apathy… His life-changing teachings are being directed to individuals so that it will stop mob mentality… Jesus’s message changes hearts one by one…. We can at least start with ours…

Luke 23

Then Pilate announced to the chief priests and the crowd, “I find no basis for a charge against this man.”

But they insisted, “He stirs up the people all over Judea by his teaching. He started in Galilee and has come all the way here.”

On hearing this, Pilate asked if the man was a Galilean. When he learned that Jesus was under Herod’s jurisdiction, he sent him to Herod, who was also in Jerusalem at that time.

When Herod saw Jesus, he was greatly pleased, because for a long time he had been wanting to see him. From what he had heard about him, he hoped to see him perform a sign of some sort. He plied him with many questions, but Jesus gave him no answer.10 The chief priests and the teachers of the law were standing there, vehemently accusing him. 11 Then Herod and his soldiers ridiculed and mocked him. Dressing him in an elegant robe, they sent him back to Pilate.12 That day Herod and Pilate became friends—before this they had been enemies.

13 Pilate called together the chief priests, the rulers and the people, 14 and said to them, “You brought me this man as one who was inciting the people to rebellion. I have examined him in your presence and have found no basis for your charges against him.15 Neither has Herod, for he sent him back to us; as you can see, he has done nothing to deserve death. 16 Therefore, I will punish him and then release him.”