Christopher Robins wrote this comment in a recent post – “To get to the Kingdom of heaven is so simple ,first you have to find the code ‘secondly you have to interpret the code. The code is said and sung most days, but have you the faith in GOD to carry on. The code is The 23rd psalm”
I didn’t understand what he meant until I found this on a Facebook page –
The Lord is my Shepherd, That’s Relationship!
I shall not be in want. That’s Supply!
He makes me lie down in green pastures, That’s Rest!
He leads me beside quiet waters, That’s Refreshment!
He restores my soul. That’s Healing!
He guides me in the paths of righteousness, That’s Guidance!
For His name’s sake. That’s Purpose!
Even though I walk through the valley of the
shadow of death, The world can be like that!
I will fear no evil, That’s Protection!
For you are with me, That’s Faithfulness!
Your rod and your staff they comfort me. That’s Protection!
You prepare a table before me in the presence
of my enemies. That’s Hope!
You anoint my head with oil, That’s Consecration!
My cup overflows. That’s Abundance!
Surely goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, That’s blessing!
And I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever. That’s eternity!
Thank you Christopher Robins for your comment, and the illumination it has brought.
What is a Miracle is the question raised by a recent comment. In my terms, a miracle occurs when God intervenes in any otherwise natural circumstance. – in other words – when He does something that wouldn’t naturally happen. I like to think that a miracle is God’s response to faith in action. I.E., We have some human need, we hold out our hand to God and He responds. Viola – a miracle happens.
How big is a miracle?
When I had life-saving lung surgery for cancer many years ago, I had no hesitation in calling the result a miracle. I went into surgery with no fear, joking with the surgery staff, and came out with no pain, and a very smooth recovery. The anesthetist came and sat on my bed after to tell me he had never had an easier intubation – I told him, “of course you didn’t doctor, there was a whole church full of people praying for this op.” It is easy to classify such events as miraculous and to think of miracles as wonderful and momentous; but what about the little things? When we find the empty park in a crowded street right outside the shop we need; when the rain stops just when we have to go out; when life flows so smoothly for us we feel blessed; are these blessings not miraculous in nature?
Psalm 1 states, “blessed is the man who meditates on my word day and night”; and that “everything that he does will be blessed”. I can testify to the truth of that. Our lives have been wonderfully smooth and blessed since we gave God control. So it is plain to me that all these little blessed things in our lives are God-given, and therefore are a never ending stream of little miracles.
The Miracle of Baptism
Taivesi Duanitutu states that the baptism of Jesus is not a miracle. I don’t understand the comment, because for me, baptism involves some divine intervention. When the Spirit of God landed on me, and when my mind was filled with blinding light and with joyful words of wisdom and illumination; I was born again and in no doubt that God was present. For me the size of the event was major, but for others it may be or was minor, but whatever the size, it is miraculous because God is present and involved. The element of baptism and the miracle of being born again are not necessarily synchronous, they may be separate in time, but they are one in fact.
Reach Out In Faith
The worldly view of a miracle is that event which can only be described by divine intervention. My view is that it is better described as a transaction between believers and God, where the believer reaches out in faith, and God responds in love. We have some human need, and God supplies that need in some manner. It is more impressive when the result is dramatic, but however the result is delivered it should be described as miraculous, and answering the question; “What is a Miracle?”
“There is a space inside us that only God can fill;” was the assertion made by our Sunday morning preacher. This hit me with some force, and I immediately felt that “Bong” of empathy with the concept. This explains very nicely our need to search out spiritual things, and it explains very nicely too the nature of our interaction with our community. We are in the business of filling that hole for others.
Find A Need
I have long believed that the only effective way to bring Jesus Christ to others is by way of meeting some need they have. I do NOT believe in the “door knock” method of evangelizing practiced by the sects – I perceive that such “in your face” confrontation is counterproductive because it alienates people. We ought to start by discovering some need, in an individual or a group, and then attempting to meet that need. The Bible states** that; “we are the gospel to others, written not in pen and ink, but in the spirit of the living God.” When, in love, we meet another’s need, we are being the Bible in action and showing the love of God. This is a more powerful witness than any words we might bring. This is how we can put a little bit of God into that empty space in another person.
Answer Their Questions
This is how we can meet the spiritual needs of other individuals in the community, by trying to answer spiritual questions, by being willing to “fill the hole” in their knowledge. We recently mounted a Community Gospel Outreach with the theme of “Have you got Questions? – We Have Answers”. There are always people seeking for spiritual truth, and we can take advantage of that need and offer to fill the empty place in their knowledge with the Gospel of Jesus.
The Deep Yearning Within Us
“The space inside us that only God can fill” is a metaphor for the deep yearning we have inside us for answers to spiritual questions. We can find contentment and fulfilment when we allow God to answer those questions, when we indulge in the spiritual exercises of prayer and contemplation; and when we feed on the word of God in the Bible. This is not to say that there are no happy or fulfilled atheists, they can be socially well balanced; but they exist in a different plane to the Christian who is dwelling in the Kingdom of Heaven, and who is fulfilled in the community by daily obedience to God and by interaction with others..
The Trinity is the threefold presence of the Christian God, as the Father, as Jesus the Son, and as the Holy Spirit. I read a post this week where the writer stated categorically that NO ONE can understand the Trinity. In fact the writer said; “The Trinity is a concept that is impossible for any human being to fully understand, let alone explain”. Sausage! – it is certainly comprehensible, if you use the information God has given us.
God in Everything
The explanation goes like this. God has told us that He created man in His own image; ergo, to understand God we must look at man [the totality of mankind]. I find that when I look at the world around me there is manifold evidence of God in it, and to understand God, we need only to look at His work. I see God in everything; in the ordered mathematical perfection of creation, in the always changing, never repeated beauty of the sky, and in the unimaginable magnitude of the universe itself.
We are Ourselves a Model
We have in our persons a model of the trinity. We exist as a physical presence, a perfectly designed physical mechanism that maintains and restores itself with no help from our sentient person, the intellect or the brain that is our personality, the driving force of our conscious being and the second part of the threefold entity which we are. We exist too as a soul, we yearn, we desire, we create, and so we have a third existence alongside the personality and the body.
Body, Mind and Soul
The physical body hungers, and is fed; it reacts to sensation and involuntarily shrinks from heat and pain. The persona however, is driven by the conscious brain and logic, and causes the body to move according to that logic. On the other hand, my emotional self, or my soul, promotes acts that the brain and the body may resist, like having more chocolate when both brain and body say I have already had more than enough. I exist on three discrete levels, and act and react on those various levels according to the dominant urges at that time.
Physical, Mental and Spiritual
Some actions spring purely from the body; E.G., breathing, dispelling hunger by eating, or shivering when cold. Other actions are the direct result of the working of the mind; E.G., writing a blog post. And the third set of actions are the product of our soul; and might be as disparate as subconsciously sipping our coffee while we write; or simultaneously enjoying a recorded musical passage.
3 Fold Existence
So the physical me will respond to stimuli without engaging the brain, the mind initiates various actions as a result of processing incoming or remembered data, and the soul floats where it will and often persuades the mind and body along with it. I can see three distinct persons in myself. I hesitate to use the word trinity, it seems sacrilegious to do so, but threefold seems to cover it.
God, the Trinity.
Our God himself is threefold, the archetypal Trinity. He comes to us by His Holy Spirit when and as our soul requires. He might respond through the love of our Lord Jesus when we need healing in our body; and by His Grace, he cherishes our immortal souls and shelters us under the shadow of his hand as God Our Father. Three in one.