Devotional for Day 30 – 4 Sept 2013
Intention: Jesus valued the individual who was in need – so must we.
Scripture: Jesus stopped and said, “Call him.” So they called to the blind man, “Cheer up! On your feet! He’s calling you.” Throwing his cloak aside, he jumped to his feet and came to Jesus. “What do you want me to do for you?” Jesus asked him
(Mark 10:49-51 NIV).
Reflection: As the Body of Christ, we have a common future and identity. This involves welcoming others, forgiving one another, humbling ourselves, becoming less—not claiming superiority over another. Our identity and future show we have the same feelings and are unified in following the Father’s plans. It includes understanding our different cultures and helping each other—becoming open to others and doing what Jesus would have done.
The story of Bartimaeus (Mark 10:46-52), teaches us many lessons about evangelization, fellowship, integrity, and solidarity. Jesus asked, “What do you want me to do for you?”
Jesus showed he valued humanity by being available. The blind man’s answer, “I want to see,” was his response, and he was healed. It was a miracle of Jesus; his faith healed him. He decided to follow Jesus and there was transformation.
Jesus’ method was to open up to the needs of the other person. Faced with Bartimaeus’ cry, Jesus stopped, asked for him to be called, and asked the question, “What do you want me to do for you?” All these actions value the individual—not a method, ideology, or doctrine. Jesus simply appealed to fellowship, opened up, and showed interest in the other person. This is because fellowship, cooperation, integrity, and solidarity are about sharing life and valuing the other person.
Often, we do not want to ask, “What do you want me to do for you?” We are afraid the person will ask us something unexpected, or worse, something we do not want to give or do. Asking questions causes instability and discomfort. We prefer to be in control and manage our agendas.
Bartimaeus was an outcast. He was considered a sinner, excluded from the covenant, excluded economically, excluded from the appreciation and esteem of others due to his blindness. Mark attributed value to him by stating his name. He was not a nameless beggar. This was very significant. We must learn the way Jesus responded to each person’s need.
Prayer: Father, thank you that you see us not only as peoples but as individuals. Your Word declares that you have engraved us on the palms of your hands and that even the very hairs on our head are numbered. Thank you that Jesus, as the exact representation of your being, showed this same love for people. Help us to follow the example of Jesus in responding to needy, often neglected and rejected, people as individuals. Forgive us for our preoccupation with big crowds and big statistics at the expense of the individual. In the name of Jesus. Amen.
[Blogger’s Comment: We thank God that today’s devotion by Carlos Scott (originally written in Spanish) reminds us that there are brothers and sisters in Latin America joining us in prayer in this Billion Souls Revival Prayer Call. 550 million individuals live in 22 countries this region of the world. 92% of these identify themselves as Christians, the majority belonging to the Catholic Church. The growth of evangelicals in the last century, and especially in the last generation, has been spectacular (from 1% to 16.8% of population from 1900-2000). Pentecostals demonstrate the greatest vigour and growth with over 66 million affiliates today. Praise God for the work He has done!
Missions vision has grown rapidly and matured in Latin America. The 1987 COMIBAM conference in Sao Paulo, Brazil sparked numerous initiatives to reach the unreached world. Then there were 1,600 missionaries in around 60 agencies. Today there are 10,000 missionaries in over 400 agencies. Thousands of others serve abroad as economic migrants or deliberate tentmakers. Praise God that He is using Spanish and Portuguese speaking Christians to reach individuals around the world! (These facts and figures are from Operation World 7th Edition by Jason Mandryk.)
Today is the Jewish festival of Rosh Hashanah (it begins at sunset on the 4th). The name Rosh Hashanah means “beginning or head of the year.” This celebration marks the beginning of the High Holy Days on the Jewish calendar; that is the 10 days of Awe from Rosh Hashanah (Feast of Trumpets) to Yom Kippur (Day of Atonement).
These days are a focused time for repentance and reconciliation.
“Therefore I will judge you, O house of Israel, each according to his conduct,” declares the Lord GOD. “Repent and turn away from all your transgressions,
so that iniquity may not become a stumbling block to you.
Cast away from you all your transgressions which you have committed and
make yourselves a new heart and a new spirit!
For why will you die, O house of Israel?
For I have no pleasure in the death of anyone who dies,” declares the Lord GOD. “Therefore, repent and live”
You can also read Joel 2:15-19, Matt 3:1-12, 5:23-26, James 2:14-17, Mal 3:1-18, Acts 3:17-21, Dan 12:1-3, Rev 20:11-15.
I encourage you to read more about this autumn Feast of Trumpets.
- Find out more about Rosh Hashanah.
- Read some background to this Jewish Feast (go to Prayer then Day 1).
- Read a devotion by Missey Butler called The Trumpets are Blowing.
- THE FEAST OF TRUMPETS – Scripture to use on this day (from Jewish Prayer Focus booklet).
To view daily devotions to help you intercede for the Jewish world over the next 21 days go to www.jewishprayerfocus.org (also available in Chinese).
Continue in prayer using the 4 prayer points as the Lord leads you.
- Pray for a worldwide outpouring of the Holy Spirit for revival and transformation of the nations of the world.
- Pray for a billion people to find Jesus Christ as their Lord and Saviour.
- Pray for an end to abortion and for God to turn back the tide of death and immorality that is sweeping the nations of the world.
- Pray for a multiplication of prayer, praise and worship to God across the world as never before, to bring great glory to God.