Our Trip to Emmaus With Jesus

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“By this time they were nearing Emmaus and the end of their journey. Jesus acted as if he were going on, 29 but they begged him, “Stay the night with us, since it is getting late.” So he went home with them.”

Luke 24:29, NLT

I’m continuing to think about these guys on the road to Emmaus.  There is an intense desire of theirs to bring Jesus in to them and off the streets.  They only have a partial understanding of Jesus,  but they do have sense enough to invite Him into a comfortable place.  This was really out of the ordinary.  Afterall, He was just an agreeable traveller.

But the sentiment was strong.  They went really out of the way, and they began to insist.  And He finally consented.  There are times when we feel strong about a thing, and we find we are doing things out of the ordinary.

These two men discerned much.  They understood that night was coming.  They also understood Jesus’ need for food and shelter.  The day was dwindling down.  He could not continue on His own.  So they made room, and they opened up their lives to Him.  And never has there been such a guest.  Oh, but what blessed friendship He brings us.  We thrive and grow under His rays.  He brings us much more then we could ever give Him.

“As they sat down to eat, he took the bread and blessed it. Then he broke it and gave it to them. 31 Suddenly, their eyes were opened, and they recognized him. And at that moment he disappeared!”

Luke 24:30-31

Jesus finally ‘undresses Himself’ .  He reveals who He really is, and these men rock back in their chairs.  Scripture says ‘that their eyes were opened’.  That took a supernatural work.  It is at this moment that Jesus disappeared.  He was gone, He just vanished from them.

“They said to each other, “Didn’t our hearts burn within us as he talked with us on the road and explained the Scriptures to us?”

(v. 32.)

They were left with memories of a ‘burning heart’.  Jesus Christ had left a deep imprint, and these two men would always ‘nurse’ these memories of a long dusty walk with the resurrected Jesus.  They would, from on then, think about these fleeting moments, when they were so close, and yet missed Him who decided to take a walk with them in the bright Judean sunlight.

It is imperative that we remember our times with Jesus. When He reveals Himself to us, we will never be the same.

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“Fool’s Wisdom”–Malcolm & Alwyn, [1973]

Alwyn Wall, Jano Wall and Tom Hooper at Calvary Chapel Melbourne, Florida, playing “Fool’s Wisdom.”

Malcolm and Alwyn were a popular British gospel beat music group in the 1970s. They played Beatles-influenced rock music with lyrics reflecting their conversion to Christianity. The duo was composed of Malcolm Wild and Alwyn Wall, who had been performing together in a band called “The Zodiacs” prior to their conversion.

Malcolm and Alwyn recorded two albums in the early ’70s before they disbanded in 1976, and a live reunion album in 1981 before again parting ways. The live album was recorded on January 24, 1981 at Calvary Chapel, Costa Mesa, California.

They recorded “Fool’s Wisdom” in 1973.  It is a simple, spiritual song.  It identifies and expresses the heart of the early “Jesus Movement.”  My personal thinking is that is, the simplicity of lyrics and performance was a blessing.  When I first listened to “Fool’s Wisdom” back in 1976, I was astounded.  Not for its flair, or pyrotechnics, but for its core simplicity.

Fool’s Wisdom Lyrics

Got myself some wisdom from a leather-backed book
Got myself a Saviour when I took a second look
Opened up the pages and what did I find?
A black and white portrait of a King who’s a friend of mine
Funny how when you think you’re right
Everybody else must be wrong
Till someone with Fool’s Wisdom somehow comes along
His voice was strange and the words He said
I didn’t quite understand
Yet I know that he was speaking right
By the leather-backed book in his hand
Hey, hey, what a day!… Fool’s Wisdom
Got myself some wisdom from a leather-backed book
Got myself a Saviour when I took a second look

 

“The message of the cross is foolish to those who are headed for destruction! But we who are being saved know it is the very power of God.”

1 Corinthians 1:18, NLT

Some of this was edited from Wikipedia.  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Malcolm_and_Alwyn and

http://robertigno-christianblogspotcom.blogspot.com/2008/10/malcolm-and-alwyn-fools-wisdom-1973.html

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When Anxiety Becomes An Issue

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 Can all your worries add a single moment to your life?”

Matthew 6:27, NLT

“And who of you by worrying and being anxious can add one unit of measure (cubit) to his stature or to the span of his life?”

Matthew 6:27, AMP

Anxiety can be described as “misplaced concern.”  Many are over-wrought and disturbed by the way life is developing for them.  They can’t make it work, and find themselves in a place they regard as perilous.  They are stressed and then try to imagine themselves to a place of success.  But a year from now, they will not have improved and find themselves in pretty much in the same place.

The evil of anxiety is that we become overly concerned with the future— today. 

Under a great deal of worry, we develop a deep tendency for fear.  Soon doubt filters in and we work ourselves up into a significant problem.  Seeking success we find ourselves in the chains of anxiety and worry.

Jesus declared that we should never ever be anxious.  He suggests that anxiety will never pay-off.  Our fear over our future can bring us nothing but spiritual poverty, and emotional crisis  We find a bag and we try to collect some security and certainty, but little do we know that our bag has holes.  It holds nothing, and leaks everything.

No matter what we think, we change a single thing.  Concentrating on wealth and success will in the long run, is futile and empty.  We can’t make an iota of a difference.

6 “Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.”

Philippians 4:6-7, NLT

Security for us is not what we can scrape up, but it is found in coming under the control of Jesus Christ.  We have an awareness that life is cruel, capricious and demanding.  We sift through our life, our eyes eager to find something, anything that will help us.  And, we find nothing. But faith in God will push the anxious thoughts out.

“An unpeaceful mind cannot operate normally. Hence the Apostle teaches us to “have no anxiety about anything” (Phil. 4:6). Deliver all anxious thoughts to God as soon as they arise. Let the peace of God maintain your heart and mind (v. 7).”

Watchman Nee

Anxiety seems to be a disturbing companion to those of us with a mental illness.  (We definitely don’t like his company.)  Anxiety shapes us and victimizes us, and we often find ourselves in a confusing place. But understanding the presence of anxiety is just a half-step towards freedom. We must shake ourselves of the fear and doubt that accompanies this sin.

We must trust our Father, and completely lean on his grace. We must learn to pray again.

Important to Know:

General Anxiety Disorder (GAD) is a seperate category of mental illness, and although similar to the anxiety experienced by many, requires the help of medical professionals.  We should not confuse the two. GAD is an illness and not just basic anxiety. Panic attacks can often accompany GAD. Get help if you think this might be an issue for you. 

Visit http://www.medicinenet.com/panic_disorder/article.htm for more information.

 

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Does Your Christianity Include You? [Discipleship]

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 Now may the God of peace make you holy in every way, and may your whole spirit and soul and body be kept blameless until our Lord Jesus Christ comes again.”

1 Thessalonians 5:23, NLT

Sometime I feel like things should be different. When I made the decision to follow Christ I operated on the assumption that things would just change. I had a lot of problems but also now had a remarkable savior.

And I still do. Fundamentally things became new. My sins were forgiven and I knew that Jesus Christ died for me.

However I failed to realize that I would sin daily. I guess I thought otherwise. As a matter of fact I became even more aware of my depravity than ever. My sins are of omission and commission and they are many. The Holy Spirit’s convicting ministry worked inside my heart.

Does your Christianity include you?

Too often I think we expect holiness to be instantaneous. We wanted a complete eradication of the bad and a dramatic new change in the good. And to a certain extent that has happened.

I now believe that our walk of disciple is more like– “two steps forward, and one step back.” Sometimes its even “one step forward and two steps back.” It can be discouraging to say the very least.

The probable reality is that discipleship is not really an instant epiphany but a gradual transformation. But that doesn’t make it a lesser miracle!

As I survey my life, I discover I sinned more after I received Christ than in my life before. Perhaps the measure of discipleship isn’t the quantity of sin but the quality of our faith.

I daily come to Jesus with my sin. I have to live in repentance every day. The miracle is that I experience the daily infilling of my heart with the Holy Spirit. When I wait on Him He comes and fills me up.

I run into issues when I don’t:

  • confess my sin
  • refuse to change
  • don’t wait on God for help
  • live out the promises in God’s Word

As a believer in Jesus I will be transformed by Him. I don’t want to pretend that I need Him daily. I am slowly being changed by the Gospel, I may struggle but He holds my heart.

“Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you entirely; and may your spirit and soul and body be preserved complete, without blame at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.”

1 Thessalonians 5:23, NASB

ybic, Bryan

 

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