Thursday, November 4, 2021

Our Luke Problem

You know that I'm not just going to let this be Luke's problem. The truth is that we all suffer from at least a little bit of Luke's oversight. We all seem to have a little bit of this natural bend toward the power, authority, and miracles of Jesus and not really the intimate, personal nature of Him. 

That is, we are more likely to tell each other about a healing that took place or a set of circumstances that miraculously came together than we are the conversation that God had with us in a moment of darkness. We're more likely to share the outcome than the prayer. More likely to talk about His performance than His promise. 

This, I think, is a challenge for us. It's a challenge for us inside the church because we are a people who desperately want to hear from God in our times of greatest need and yet, we are a people who aren't hearing stories about our God who is present in just those times. We're only hearing His victories, not His presence, and that sets up an unrealistic standard for us - namely, that God is going to solve every problem that we have in just the way that we want Him to or else, our faith must not be what we think it is. Or maybe our God is not who we think He is. 

Do you see how this intensifies our questions? Right at the moment when we most need assurance, we are confronted with more doubt because we have this limited view of Jesus, this view where He is supposed to come in and talk to demons and fevers and then what? We just get up and cook dinner or...? 

We need to know that Jesus speaks to more than demons and fevers. We need to know that He's in the waiting room just as profoundly as He is in the operating room. We need to know that He's just as present right now as He is when we approach that thin line between time and eternity. We need to know that when He looks at us, He sees more than our demons and fevers, that He sees us and loves us

And the sad truth is that we, like Luke, have a thousand stories about this, but we aren't telling them. These aren't the stories that we're sharing about Jesus. We aren't sharing His nearness. We aren't sharing His voice. We aren't sharing His laugh. We aren't sharing the way that He cries with us or joins us around our table or whispers His promises in our ears. 

We're waiting for the miracle, and when and if that happens, we'll talk about it.  

My friends, I am telling you, the miracle is already happening. Jesus Christ, the Son of God Himself, God in flesh, crossed eternity to get to us, to walk with us, to talk with us, and that is the heart of the Gospel. That is the good news that we need to be sharing. That is the story we need to tell one another. 

Because that is the hope that we need. 

Not a God of miracles. Every faith has that. Not a God who controls the wind and the waves; there are dozens of 'gods' who do such a thing. But our God? Our God speaks to the wind and the waves. Just like He speaks to us. That's what makes Him worthy of our praise. 

So let's start telling that story. Can we? Will we? Please? 

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