Thursday, November 18, 2010

The Diver - Story of Jesus' love

A young man who had been raised as an atheist was training to be an Olympic diver.
 The only spiritual influence in his life came from his outspoken Christian friend. The young diver never really paid much attention to his friend's sermons, but he heard them often.
One night the diver  went to the indoor pool at the college he attended. The lights were all off, but as the pool had big skylights and the moon was bright, there was plenty of light to practice by.

The young man climbed up to the highest diving board and as he turned his back to the pool on the edge of the board and extended his arms out, he saw his shadow on the wall.

The shadow of his body, was in the shape of a cross.
Instead of diving, he knelt down and finally asked God to come into his life.
As the young man knelt, a maintenance man walked in and turned the lights on. The pool had been drained for repairs.

Jesus Loves You

Questions Asked by God, Questions 16-20

I will question you, and you shall answer Me. Job 40:7
When God asks us questions He is not giving us an intellectual quiz. God is not trying to see how smart we are or how well we can study or cram for an exam. His questions are usually short, simple, and direct. God asks us questions, not to test our IQ, but to test our hearts, to have us examine our ways, and to bring change to our lives.

Questions Asked by God, Questions 1-5
Questions Asked by God, Questions 6-10
Questions Asked by God, Questions 11-15

Here are 5 more questions asked by God. Even though God asked these questions to others, we can all think about how we would answer these questions if God directed them to us.

16. After the resurrection Jesus appeared before the disciples and asked, “Why are you frightened?” he asked. “Why are your hearts filled with doubt?” Luke 24:38
There are times when God asks us questions to move our attention away from the natural circumstances of life to fix our attention on the supernatural things He is doing outside of our circumstances. He wants us to fix our faith, not on what our reasoning mind is telling us, but upon the Words He has spoken and the promises He has declared. May Jesus open our eyes to see what doubt and fear cannot see.

17. Jesus standing on the shore called out, “Fellows, have you caught any fish?” John 21:5
Have you ever heard God ask you in a loving, caring way, “How are you doing?” The disciples, after a long, fruitless night of fishing, heard this kind of question coming to them from the shore. When God asks us this type of question, He is not someone who has a passing, casual interest in us and our situation. This question meant that He was stepping into their world, into their labours, and into their frustrations. He was there to completely identify with their need and provide them with more than they could ever imagine. In that moment, Jesus, not only filled their empty nets, but provided them with a breakfast on the shore, His companionship, and a fishing story they would never forget.  

18. After breakfast Jesus asked Simon Peter, “Simon son of John, do you love me more than these?”  John 21:15
This was not a question directed at an unbeliever, but to a disciple. Jesus asks His deepest questions to those who have left all to follow Him. Jesus asks Peter what He would do, not for reward’s sake, not for recognition’s sake, but for love’s sake. Why do we do what we do? This is a question each of us who are servants of the Lord must answer. If we do our work for people’s sake we will be disappointed, frustrated, and hurt; if we do it for results’ sake we will strive, pressure, and manipulate people and situations; if we do it for security’s sake we will be frightened, protective, and anxious; but if we do it for love’s sake and for Jesus’ sake we will be faithful servants, content to do what pleases Him and brings Him glory.

19. Jesus replied, “If I want him to remain alive until I return, what is that to you? As for you, follow me.” John 21:22
This question will help keep our walk with Jesus uncomplicated and uncluttered. It will keep us from fixing our eyes on others and fixing them on Jesus instead. It will move us away from the burden of trying to determine what others should or shouldn’t to be doing, and keep us focused on what we should or should not be doing.  This question is also a reminder that if we are not comparing ourselves to others we will not struggle with the sins that accompany comparisons, such as envy and jealousy.

20. “He fell to the ground and heard a voice saying to him, “Saul! Saul! Why are you persecuting me?” Acts 9:4
Through this question we see the deep identity Jesus Christ has with His body.  Saul was persecuting believers, but Jesus didn’t ask Saul, “Why are you persecuting those who believe in Me.” Jesus asked Saul, “Why are you persecuting Me.” Every time Saul persecuted a believer in Jesus, Saul was persecuting Jesus. Jesus never separates Himself from His people. He is the head of the body, and He lives in every believer. Whatever is done to a believer is done to Jesus. This is also true in a positive way. Bless Jesus’ people and you bless Jesus, give to Jesus’ people and you give to Jesus…even a cup of cold water will not go without its reward.

Questions Asked by God, Questions 1-5
Questions Asked by God, Questions 6-10
Questions Asked by God, Questions 11-15

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