Bruised & Imperfect

Furthering thoughts for April 13th 2019

I was at Ralph’s today with Zoey and Eliott and we were in the produce section as we came upon the gala apples. Other than fuji, gala is always our go-to apple. But anyways, I found the produce section very enjoyable today as I was teaching Zoey how to pick various produce. We first started with the avocados. It’s important to find one that is slightly green, as it will be ready for tomorrow. Or when finding bananas, I prefer to pick slightly green so that in the coming days, they will be yellow and ripe. So finally we came to the apple aisle where we were discussing the way in which you pick an apple.

I said, “you always want to pick one without any bruise”. “If you see a bruise put it away and find a new one”. And just as I was looking through the apples, rotating and carefully inspecting them, searching for bruises, or good even color it reminded me of the grace of God and His servant-heart.

Though we are sinful, bruised and imperfect, our Lord doesn’t “put it away and find a new one”, but rather God sends us our Savior to wipe away what was once perishable [Gen3, Rm5:12] to now what is imperishable [1Cor15].

I know for us, it’s quite easy to discard and move on, but for the Lord, He loves you so much that He sent His Son to die for you. Jesus “humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross” [Php2:8]. He didn’t move on. but He came to be the slave of all, standing in our place, dying the big death, so that we may have eternal life.

As we head into Holy Week, may we dwell upon the merciful work of our Lord Jesus Christ. He should have forsaken us all, yet by His grace as our suffering servant, Jesus laid down His life for all of us.

We say “discard”, Jesus says, “I will die and rise for you”.

We say “I don’t deserve it”, Jesus says, “I forgive you”

So the next time you see a bruised apple in the produce aisle, be reminded of the love of God and His mercy He has for you that. “while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us” Romans 5:8. Holy and blameless we are all by the body and blood of our Lord!

A blessed Palm Sunday to you all!

+PrJ

Saved by Faith

Furthering Thoughts for April 12, 2019

“Go your way; your faith has made you well”

Indeed, but even a more pointed translation would be read as, “Go your way; your faith has saved you”

Again, something we all need to hear again and again and again and again and again and again and again…….

Wellness is defined in so many different ways. For many people view wellness through the temporal lens. Maybe wellness involves your retirement plan, or your physical well being ie..healthy body and mind. And rightfully so, we continuously pray in the midst of sickness and suffering and we thank the Lord through all things, for He provides for us.

Yet, for all of us, it’s easy to place wellness [as a whole] solely in the temporal lens. Tunnel visioned we become, that we are dead set on finding complete wellness in this fleeting world.

The words of Jesus to blind Bartimaeus remind all of us that it is faith that has made us well. Yes, there is suffering in this life, much to bear for all of us, yet at the end of the day, we are well by the one who “bore our greatest burden on the Cross”.

Yes, as we pray in the Lord’s prayer, “deliver us from evil”. And to our blessed end Jesus has answered by His body and blood, His death and resurrection, His promises, “Today you will be in paradise”.

The Cross and Empty Tomb has saved you.

The Cross and Empty Tomb has made you well.

The Cross and Empty Tomb has made you the most well you will ever be.

For in Christ, we have been given the greatest wellness: Forgiveness of sins, eternal life and salvation.

Enjoy this day in the Lord’s name!

+PrJ