Thursday, September 25, 2008

Matthew 14:15-21 "Out-of-the-Box Faith"

Read Matthew 14:15-21.

"Bring them here to me." NIV
The first thing that strikes me about this passage is that the disciples appear to be telling Jesus what to do. I never studied Greek, but all the translations I've looked at say that they said, "Send (or dismiss) the crowds away." You don't hear, "Lord, if you think it's best, maybe we should send the people home to eat." No, they are instructing the Messiah. I want to chuckle at their audacity, but the humor would soon turn to a groan as I remember the times I tried to tell God how it should be. We are such an arrogant race of human beings. We think we've got it all figured out. We know just what we want to do, when we want to do it, and how it will be accomplished. Then out of courtesy, we politely inform the God of the universe how it's going to be. What has fed this kind of thinking? Where has the respect and reverence gone? Where is the awe?

But in all Jesus' gentleness, He simply states to the disciples the impossible. "You give them something to eat." Did they bust out laughing or stand there with mouths gaping wondering at Jesus' sanity? There's a Facebook piece of flair that says, "Ha ha, wait, what?" I'm sure this is what the disciples were thinking. The really ironic part is that they would have any questions about this happening. After all, they've been watching Jesus heal all kinds of sicknesses and handicaps. Why couldn't he feed 5000 men plus women and children using only a small lunch? When placed in the hands of Christ, isn't everything possible?

How many times have I told the Lord how something was going to go down and missed out on the miracles He wanted to show me? Unfortunately, I'm a natural problem-solver. I try to figure everything out in my way using my own paradigms and resources when I could be watching the Almighty show me a miraculous way so He could be glorified. We are so bound by the human brain we strain to fill with facts and figures, and then add in a lot of arrogance and you have a formula for inferiority. But if we can let go of all that and have faith the size of a mustard seed in the One who formed us, became one of us, sacrificed for us, and overcame the death we deserve, then we will see things beyond our wildest imagination. It's time to break out of the box. The enemy created the box and I don't want to stay there. It's full of pat methods, man-made ideas, and arrogance. I want to break free and walk in His power and creativity. I want to live out a faith that knows no boundaries. All things are possible with Christ, and I choose to live in the miraculous.

Further Thoughts:
  1. Many Old Testament people had out-of-the-box faith. Who were they and what made their faith outside the ordinary?
  2. Is God leading you to do something and you think you have the way all figured out? Stop and ask Him if this is His way of doing it. Maybe He has a miracle He wants to show you. Don't miss out on the miraculous.

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