Thursday, April 12, 2018

Timeless Truths. Expectations. 1 of 3

On February 18, 2018, Bryan Ruark, founder and lead administrator/chaplain /etc. of Cocal Gracias in Honduras spoke at Mission Church of the Nazarene. First, he described the programs at Cocal Gracias. 

Cocal Gracias is what he calls Ministry with Training.
Ministry happens with a purpose.
Every class has a Bible study.
Training includes

Most of the programs lead to certification in that field--an important step in improving compensation for the workers.
Click on this like for more information about Cocal Gracias.

He switched gears at that point, explaining that God laid a specific message on his heart the night before. That’s the rest of this post. It’s the first part of a two-part example of how God works.

I don't know why, but I continue to be amazed by how God links apparently unrelated events together in recognizable patterns. Maybe I'm the only one who sees a pattern, but I'm not going down that road. Suffice it to say, that I've added a third link to this chain/series of blog posts. 

Let me know if you see a pattern, too!

At Cocal Gracias the expectation is THAT ALL STUDENTS WILL BE SAVED.

The goal of parents is to reduce the child’s expectations so their children will become independent.

Independence is not a goal for His children. God takes care of our needs if we allow Him to work.

If we have high expectations for God, He will faithfully meet/exceed our expectations. In fact, God wants us to have high expectations so He CAN exceed them.

Jesus life is a model of what a life of expectations for God can be. Many verses in the New Testament say that Jesus came to a town or region and ALL were healed. When Jesus fed a crowd it was a CROWD and everyone got enough to eat, and there were leftovers.

News about him spread all over Syria, and people brought to him all who were ill with various diseases, those suffering severe pain, the demon-possessed, those having seizures, and the paralyzed; and he healed them.

When evening came, many who were demon-possessed were brought to him, and he drove out the spirits with a word and healed all the sick.

God’s Chosen Servant ] Aware of this, Jesus withdrew from that place. A large crowd followed him, and he healed all who were ill.

and begged him to let the sick just touch the edge of his cloak, and all who touched it were healed.

And wherever he went—into villages, towns or countryside—they placed the sick in the marketplaces. They begged him to let them touch even the edge of his cloak, and all who touched it were healed.

Expect great things from God, and God will show His power!

There were times in His ministry that Jesus is amazed.
[Jesus] was not far from the house when the centurion sent friends to say to him: “Lord, don’t trouble yourself, for I do not deserve to have you come under my roof.That is why I did not even consider myself worthy to come to you. But say the word, and my servant will be healed. For I myself am a man under authority, with soldiers under me. I tell this one, ‘Go,’ and he goes; and that one, ‘Come,’ and he comes. I say to my servant, ‘Do this,’ and he does it.”
When Jesus heard this, he was amazed at him, and turning to the crowd following him, he said, “I tell you, I have not found such great faith even in Israel.”10 Then the men who had been sent returned to the house and found the servant well.
Luke 7:6-10

Jesus left there and went to his hometown, accompanied by his disciples.When the Sabbath came, he began to teach in the synagogue, and many who heard him were amazed.
“Where did this man get these things?” they asked. “What’s this wisdom that has been given him? What are these remarkable miracles he is performing? Isn’t this the carpenter? Isn’t this Mary’s son and the brother of James, Joseph,[a] Judas and Simon? Aren’t his sisters here with us?” And they took offense at him.
Jesus said to them, “A prophet is not without honor except in his own town, among his relatives and in his own home.” He could not do any miracles there, except lay his hands on a few sick people and heal them. He was amazed at their lack of faith.

While Jesus is on the mount where the transfiguration occurs, the disciples can’t cast out a demon. He does not say it can’t be done (a low expectation). Instead, He casts out the demon and explains why they could not do it.

“Teacher, I brought you my son, who is possessed by a spirit that has robbed him of speech. 18 Whenever it seizes him, it throws him to the ground. He foams at the mouth, gnashes his teeth and becomes rigid. I asked your disciples to drive out the spirit, but they could not.”
19 “You unbelieving generation,” Jesus replied, “how long shall I stay with you? How long shall I put up with you? Bring the boy to me.”
20 So they brought him. When the spirit saw Jesus, it immediately threw the boy into a convulsion. He fell to the ground and rolled around, foaming at the mouth.
21 Jesus asked the boy’s father, “How long has he been like this?”
“From childhood,” he answered. 22 “It has often thrown him into fire or water to kill him. But if you can do anything, take pity on us and help us.”
23 “‘If you can’?” said Jesus. “Everything is possible for one who believes.”
24 Immediately the boy’s father exclaimed, “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!”
25 When Jesus saw that a crowd was running to the scene, he rebuked the impure spirit. “You deaf and mute spirit,” he said, “I command you, come out of him and never enter him again.”
26 The spirit shrieked, convulsed him violently and came out. The boy looked so much like a corpse that many said, “He’s dead.” 27 But Jesus took him by the hand and lifted him to his feet, and he stood up.
28 After Jesus had gone indoors, his disciples asked him privately, “Why couldn’t we drive it out?”
29 He replied, “This kind can come out only by prayer.[a]
Mark 9:17-29

What are your expectations of God?

What should they be?

Next Timeless Truths is an unplanned, by us humans, continuation of the theme of this post. The Waiting Father is the title of a devotional by Dr. Joe Watkins six days after the message in this post.

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