JUST AS I AM
Dear God, shine the light of Your face upon me, and make me a light for You in the world.
Read Mark 3:7–19
Crowds Follow Jesus
7 Jesus withdrew with his disciples to the lake, and a large crowd from Galilee followed. 8 When they heard about all he was doing, many people came to him from Judea, Jerusalem, Idumea, and the regions across the Jordan and around Tyre and Sidon. 9 Because of the crowd he told his disciples to have a small boat ready for him, to keep the people from crowding him. 10 For he had healed many, so that those with diseases were pushing forward to touch him. 11 Whenever the impure spirits saw him, they fell down before him and cried out, “You are the Son of God.” 12 But he gave them strict orders not to tell others about him.
Jesus Appoints the Twelve
13 Jesus went up on a mountainside and called to him those he wanted, and they came to him. 14 He appointed twelve[a] that they might be with him and that he might send them out to preach 15 and to have authority to drive out demons. 16 These are the twelve he appointed: Simon (to whom he gave the name Peter), 17 James son of Zebedee and his brother John (to them he gave the name Boanerges, which means “sons of thunder”), 18 Andrew, Philip, Bartholomew, Matthew, Thomas, James son of Alphaeus, Thaddaeus, Simon the Zealot 19 and Judas Iscariot, who betrayed him.
- Mark 3:14 Some manuscripts twelve—designating them apostles—
New International Version (NIV)Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
Reflect‘Jesus, take me as I am; I can come no other way. Take me deeper into you; make my flesh life melt away.’*
The Pharisees (6) – religious leaders – don’t at all get who Jesus is; the crowd – with just the evidence of their eyes, ears and some hearsay – half get it (8); but the evil spirits whom Jesus confronts get it completely (11). He’s the Son of God. How much did you really understand about Jesus when you first started following Him? Thank Him that it was enough to make a start.
Jesus chooses a bunch of far-from-perfect ordinary guys to be His specially chosen apostles or ‘sent ones.’ To do what? To be with Him, to preach and drive out demons (14,15) – in other words, to learn from Jesus and tell stories of Him in their lives, to explain the kingdom of God, and to carry on the work that Jesus does (John 14:12). And their track record so far? Zero. Jesus will give them all the learning they need.
While we’re not ‘apostles,’ Jesus’ followers are still called to do these three things. Recall times when you’ve been able to do each of them.
Amazing, isn’t it, especially considering your starting point?
Let’s put it into practice. Think of someone today with whom you can share a story of God’s hand at work in your life.
Amazing One, I marvel that You can take ordinary people like me and accomplish extraordinary things. Lord I am Yours, use me today.
*Dave Bryant © 1978 Kingsway/Thankyou Music.
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