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Posts Tagged ‘emotions’

“Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep.” Romans 12:15 (NRSV)

I always think of this verse when a holiday rolls around. And I’ve been thinking about this post for quite a long time.

The holidays are a mixed bag. We all want to have as much fun as the next person, but many of us have at least one that rings hollow for us. Whether it’s the loss of a loved one or a simple disconnect from the relevance of the day, we just don’t share the same “spirit” as “everyone else”. We may struggle with the expectations of others or just our own standard to achieve a certain level of cheer.

Rather than come across as self-righteous in contrast with someone else’s holiday joy or holiday blues… Rather than rain on someone else’s parade or pity party… I decided to wait to share my thoughts till Father’s Day which is, at best, the emptiest and sometimes saddest of holidays for me. I did not grow up knowing my father. I did not have any long-term stable father figure. But none of that is the point of this post, and yet I’m obviously preaching to myself as I write. (more…)

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Have you ever thought about what surprises God? Perhaps we take it for granted that God’s omniscience undercuts any possibility of catching God off guard. Still the Bible describes two instances where Jesus (fully God and fully man) is “surprised” or “amazed”. In Mark 6:5-7, it says:

[Jesus] was not able to perform any miracles there, except that he placed his hands on a few sick people and healed them. He was greatly surprised, because the people did not have faith. (Good News version)

Then in both Matthew 8:9-11 and Luke 7:8-10, a Roman centurion tells Jesus not to come to his house to heal his servant, but appeals to Jesus’ authority and only “say the word”:

When Jesus heard this, he was surprised and said to the people following him, “I tell you, I have never found anyone in Israel with faith like this.” (Good News version)

The obvious thing to note is that both instances are in regards to faith–either the great lack of it or the great exercise of it. Jesus seems to expect that he can heal at least some people wherever he goes, but that some active show of power is needed to help people along. (more…)

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