Later that night, the boat was in the middle of the lake, and he was alone on land. He saw the disciples straining at the oars, because the wind was against them.
Shortly before dawn he went out to them, walking on the lake. He was about to pass by them, but when they saw him walking on the lake, they thought he was a ghost.
They cried out, because they all saw him and were terrified. Immediately he spoke to them and said, “Take courage! It is I. Don’t be afraid.” Mark 6:47-50
Even though the disciples had been with Jesus for a long time, they didn’t recognize him as he approached in the storm. The story reminds us that we may not recognize the Lord when He comes to us in the middle of our own personal storms.
[Adapted from “Lessons in Religion”]
Inspired and adapted through an article in “Rethink Church”
Depression… anxiety… inability to concentrate… mood changes… trouble relating to people… low energy… feeling hostile towards others… excessive worry… feeling unable to cope with stress… excessive drug or alcohol consumption…
An inability to deal with mental health symptoms is not always an indication of sin in your life. In some cases it might be an indication of illness–and may need to be treated as any other illness gets treated (with a doctor’s help).
“in the shadow of your wings I will take refuge, “Be merciful to me, O God, be merciful to me, for in you my soul takes refuge; until the destroying storms pass by.” [Psalm 57:1]
In many ways, we are bound to one another. So when one person suffers, we all encounter suffering. This passage is just one of many that remind of our connectedness: “If one member suffers, all suffer together with it; if one member is honoured, all rejoice together with it.” [1 Corinthians 12:26]
If you or a friend need help, please take that step and reach out to someone you trust.
Psychology Today offers a referral site. If you have suicidal thoughts call a suicide hotline number. In the U.S., call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (1-800-273-8255) or use its webchat on suicidepreventionlifeline.org/chat.
Jesus healed a man who had been an disabled for thirty-eight years (John 5:5). The man must have been desperate: he had been putting his hope in the healing powers of the waters of Bethesda, which would bubble up periodically, and it was thought that the first person in after the waters bubbled up would be healed. But this man had no one to help him get in first (v.7).
He had no friends, no close family. Nobody cared for him. He was alone and abandoned. Nobody loved him, but Jesus loved him.
Jesus says to him, as he says to each one of us, ‘Do you want to get well?’ (v.6). For thirty-eight years, this man had learned to survive as he was. Now he has to rise up, make choices, find new friends, find work and become responsible for his life.
Joyce Meyer writes of this incident that, in effect, Jesus said to the man, ‘Don’t just lie there, do something!’ She continues, ‘Being sexually abused for approximately fifteen years and growing up in a dysfunctional home left me lacking confidence and filled with shame. I wanted to have good things in my life, but I was stuck in emotional torment and despair.
‘Like the man in John 5, Jesus did not give me pity either. Jesus was actually very firm with me and He applied a lot of tough love, but His refusal to let me wallow in self-pity was a turning point in my life. I am not in the pit any longer. I now have a great life. If you will reject self-pity, actively look to God and do what He instructs you to do, you can have a great life too.’
From Pinterest, a quote pin.it/3UTDoaJ
Philippians 4:8 “Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.”
Watching our three very different dogs’ natural behavior, it occured to me how much we humans are like that
One peed in the yard, then the other two just had to sniff around and contribute their pee in the same spot.
When you see someone’s unpleasantness on social media, do you contribute your mess too?
In that same theme, when you see someone making a positive difference, do you join in and help (or do something else to make a difference)?
Do you feel competitive like when our dogs fight over who gets the best toy? We can place 3 balls within their reach, but they all want the same one. Friends, there is enough work to go around, and enough Jesus for every person, and we can choose to be part of the solution, rather than contributing to the problem!
The article below may seem simple, truth for life often is. We love to complicate things, Don’t we? And especially important in this process, pray, and allow time to listen well.
I thought to myself, that looks pretty and fun, why not learn a new skill. The videos made it look like something I might enjoy, then the books seemed very helpful. Then my new beginner calligraphy set was enticingly cute.
I quickly discovered what a clueless beginner I am. But I am not a quitter, no ma’am! Fair warning, you might get a handwritten letter that looks nothing like beautiful calligraphy. Be nice with my fragile feelings.
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