When I entered into a relationship with Jesus, as I’ve written about, I was blind-sided by some of the responses.
My life was radically changed. I mean, I went from messed up, self centered and depressed to directed, caring, and joyful.
Yet the responses were all over the board.
One acquaintance, who’d recently experienced a similar transformation, said, “Fabulous! Let’s talk. Tell me about it.”
And we grew to be close friends.
An on and off girl friend, who lived in a distant city, remarked when I saw her afterwards, “Yeah, I heard you’d become a Jesus freak.”
I laughed and replied, “Wow, I’m not sure I’m a Jesus freak but I have always been a little wacked out.” And went on to tell her what had happened.
She responded, “You know, that’s great for you. It’s just not my thing right now.”
A third friend was one of my closest growing up. His mom was like a second mom.
See they were Armenian so there was always lots of family events and eating going on. And I was just one of the kids. So often I spent more time at their home than my own.
He told me, “I talked to my mom about what happened to you. She talked with our priest and he said I needed to be careful. This isn’t according to their doctrines.”
To say I was bewildered would be an understatement.
Yet, Jesus remarkably experienced the same reactions to a miracle.
Some men brought a friend who was demon possessed and because of that blind and mute. They forced their way into the crowd and asked Jesus to heal him which he did instantly.
The crowd responded, “Wow, maybe this is the Messiah?”
The religious leaders sneered, “He’s not from God. He only gets his power from Satan.”*
Same miracle. Three ways of seeing it that would determine who would ever see another.
Maybe it holds a clue for us if we want to see a miracle.
First, was the view of the man and his friends.
He was an outcast, apart from society.
So when his friends brought him to Jesus in the crowd they were risking everything. Their reputations, their pride, even their safety. Yet they came anyway and pushed their way through to Jesus because they expected him to act.
The second view was from the crowd.
Same miracle yet they responded, “Hmm, maybe something is going on here? Could this actually be from God? Maybe Jesus is who he says? I’ll have to think about it.”
The third view was from the religious leaders.
Confronted with the miracle they responded, “It’s a magic trick. This impostor uses black magic. It can’t be from God because it doesn’t fit our doctrines and he’s an outsider.”
Same miracle, yet only one group saw it. Only one group left knowing the God who worked it.
We can experience miracles without seeing them. Or we can see them and experience them again.
What has been your experience?
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*Matthew 12: 22-24