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Hope for the Day

Now that I have your attention

Diane Houghtaling
Posted 9/3/21

Jesus had just healed a man with a shriveled hand in front of everyone in the synagogue on the Sabbath, which was unlawful to do (Mark 3:1-6). Now the Pharisees were really angry and began to plot …

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Hope for the Day

Now that I have your attention

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Jesus had just healed a man with a shriveled hand in front of everyone in the synagogue on the Sabbath, which was unlawful to do (Mark 3:1-6). Now the Pharisees were really angry and began to plot how they might kill Him. So Jesus and His disciples withdrew to the Sea of Galilee. By now He was gaining some notoriety because of the miraculous healings He’d performed, and people from far and near began flocking to see Him. Many needed healing; others just wanted to see what He would do and satisfy their curiosity. Luke 6:19 tells us that the people all tried to touch Jesus because power was coming from Him to heal them. He had compassion on the crowd to heal, but since that was not His main objective that day, Jesus told the disciples to have a small boat ready for Him as the crowd continued to press in upon Him. From the boat Jesus hoped to teach the people and share the message of who He was and why He’d come. But the crowds were more interested in seeing His miracles. Jesus had become a celebrity, which was far from His desire. So He had to put a little distance between Himself and the people. From this vantage point, He hoped they would stop and listen to His message. Sometimes Jesus has to put a little distance between Himself and us, too. Sometimes we’re more interested in just getting what we need from Jesus rather than listening to the message He wants to teach us. Sometimes we just want the healing, the provision, the finances, the relationship, the job, or whatever our hearts desire. But Jesus wants us to desire Him first and foremost. So He gets into a boat and pushes out from shore, still within hearing distance but not quite within our reach. We continue on with our frantic crying out, bringing our wish list, just hoping we will be the next one that Jesus touches. But after awhile we begin to notice something. Our prayers aren’t getting answered, and by the way, where did Jesus go? We don’t sense His presence anymore and can’t seem to find Him. Now Jesus is starting to get our attention. Suddenly the answered prayers and the needs and wants don’t seem quite as important. We need to find Jesus. So we begin to cry out to Him, this time not with our needs, but to find Him and His presence. That’s when Jesus can finally say, “Now that I have your attention, listen to Me. I have a message for you. I have something I’d like to teach you. I’d like to reveal Myself to you and show you who I really am. I’d like you to know why I came and what I have for you beyond the things of this world.” Now Jesus can share with us our true need, the deepest need of our hearts and lives. He can lead us into repentance and salvation, the reason He came. He can draw us into an intimate relationship with Him, into His very presence. He can pour out upon us His love, joy, peace, hope, and the abundant life He desires to give us. It all starts when we stop, step away from the crowd, search for Him until we find Him, and listen to His message to us. Hope Ministries is a Christian counseling center, and we are here to help. If you would like to speak confidentially with someone, give us a call at 482-5300.

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