Jesus – Messiah – Really?

gateway-blog

Matthew 11:6

John was in prison, locked up for preaching that the Kingdom of Heaven was at hand, and that Jesus was Messiah. In his dismal situation, John sought reassurance that his life, and impending death, would not be in vain. Something about the Lord’s ministry haunted him, so he sent messengers to ask Christ if He really was the Savior.

Jesus told John’s disciples to give their own first hand, eye witness report of the things He did and said.

Then, the Lord turned and spoke to the crowd that was present: “Blessed is he who is not offended because of Me” (NKJV). His remark sprang directly from John’s situation – which was not pleasant. He used John as an illustration to teach: “Blessed is the individual who does not stumble and turn back when things spin out of control, and life takes an unexpected turn for the worse.” Blessed are those who keep following Him when He does not meet our own expectations. The shortcoming is not in Him – it’s in our expectations! Let ’em go!

John was suffering physically in a filthy, degrading, disgusting environment. It was not a place he had chosen to be. He had been thrown in jail by others. But his real torment was coming from within his own mind. He had an idea of what the Savior’s ministry would be like, and when He didn’t fit John’s preconceived idea, he began to wonder if he had missed the mark. Jesus reassured him had not, and his ministry had not been in vain.

We can be imprisoned, too – in a room built by past experience that has led us to our present understandings. We have our idea about how things ought to be, of how God ought to work in our lives, or in others’. When God doesn’t do things the way we think He should, we doubt and wonder if we’ve made a mistake in forsaking all and following Him. Some even falter and fall away as they question, failing to pursue an answer from Him. But the Lord tells us we are blessed when we do not stumble and fall when our expectations are not met.

The woman with a demon-possessed daughter comes to mind (Mt 15, Mk 7). The Lord actually insulted her, yet she was not discouraged, and she refused to be disappointed. She accepted the insult because she had her heart set on a much greater prize. She received her miracle, and her daughter was set free. She refused to be offended because of Him!

The less developed our mind is, the smaller our mental jail cell. That is, the less able we are to imagine what God can do, and the less able we are to decipher and understand His word, the more confining our cell. God has given us the ability to imagine, to dream, to envision what can be. He has given us the ability to read and to meditate on His word. He wants to reveal Himself to us. But as long as we remain within the confines of our own ideas – locked up in our cell, we will not see His glory.

He wants to do “exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think” (Eph 3:20). He wants to take us to a higher place: “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts” (Is 55:9)

We will never understand all about our God – He’s simply too big, too wonderful. Thank God – that’s because he’s God! Yet, He wants us to be with him while He shows us what He can do.

When Jesus doesn’t meet your expectations, rest assured He’s doing far more than you expected! Evidence will lie to you. Jesus is bigger than what you see.

It’s time for a jailbreak! You’ve been confined, shut up in your narrow little spot long enough! You will find that, when you break out of your jail cell, your God will be turned loose. The miraculous will happen! Let’s believe for the outrageous, for the impossible, for the miraculous!