For an hour is coming when all who are in the tombs will hear his voice 29 and come out, those who have done good to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil to the resurrection of judgment.
30 “I can do nothing on my own. As I hear, I judge, and my judgment is just, because I seek not my own will but the will of him who sent me.
31 If I alone bear witness about myself, my testimony is not true. 32 There is another who bears witness about me, and I know that the testimony that he bears about me is true. 33 You sent to John, and he has borne witness to the truth. 34 Not that the testimony that I receive is from man, but I say these things so that you may be saved.
35 He was a burning and shining lamp, and you were willing to rejoice for a while in his light.
36 But the testimony that I have is greater than that of John. For the works that the Father has given me to accomplish, the very works that I am doing, bear witness about me that the Father has sent me.
37 And the Father who sent me has himself borne witness about me. His voice you have never heard, his form you have never seen, 38 and you do not have his word abiding in you, for you do not believe the one whom he has sent.
39 You search the Scriptures because you think that in them you have eternal life; and it is they that bear witness about me, 40 yet you refuse to come to me that you may have life.
41 I do not receive glory from people. 42 But I know that you do not have the love of God within you. 43 I have come in my Father's name, and you do not receive me. If another comes in his own name, you will receive him.
44 How can you believe, when you receive glory from one another and do not seek the glory that comes from the only God? 45 Do not think that I will accuse you to the Father.
There is one who accuses you: Moses, on whom you have set your hope.
46 For if you believed Moses, you would believe me; for he wrote of me.
47 But if you do not believe his writings, how will you believe my words?”
Father God tells us something in an Imperial Style. He had done this with Nicodemus - visiting at night.
Jesus answered them, “This is the work of God, that you believe in him whom he has sent.”
We all have days where we gather with those we love and we think about our life. Our goals, our daily life, our dreams, our childhood, our parents, our grandparents. The good years, the bad years, the decisions past, the decisions of today and the future.
Charles Dickens was a philosopher of human conditions applying just as easily today. Circles of loved ones who will praise God and see His hand blesses and gives "opportunities for a solution". How are we letting the river of life run over our river rocks? How are our conversations going? There was a study completed in the 1970s telling about the offspring of famous preachers. The result of the studies showed that the offspring of preachers "preacher's kids" mostly flow upward in life. Norman Vincent Peale called this learning Positive Thinking.
The Bible says, harshly, believing in Jesus can be divisive. Yes, this is undoubtedly true. Jesus tells us we have to work to believe. A sentence of Scripture to ponder... if we don't place Jesus and His Words and Love first we have settled for a ride down some road. What road? Well, surely, the goodness of mankind is going to lead us in humanistically, superlative fashion down the right path. No, according to fiction, history and our lives - we realize agenda can push, pull, turn, destroy, harm and abuse for self glory.
We have to fight for the ability to believe. To say - "I have seen the work of God in my life, and I will believe God is present here today." I've also seen in the belief - like Joseph - accepting mercy towards Mary - in the work of belief - God becomes as apparent as the Road to Emmaus.
The Scriptures tell us - the disciples were always halves. Half belief this is God and God alone can do these amazing acts of Life. And then they believed the old life, the old every day, the old disappointments would prevail and this Awe and Wonder of the Lord God and His Majesty - would fade off and they should run for the hills. Just like the Children of the Israel in the Exodus. 40 years.
David - believed and saw his anointed dream being given and fade away to be redeemed again - to fulfillment.
If we do not fight to believe daily - we wonder off and down.
God says place Him first above agreeing even with loved ones. God says do the Work He gives. God says believe. And in this Joy of the Lord God Father of All, we find we will have Joy to give. Endurance to share.
Building a Hope and Future.
Even on the days this arrives.
I have talked to so many young people who, when asked about the guiding person in their life - it is a grandparent. Not everyone is appreciated all the time - but with diligence - the one who believed God - who cooked the meals and made curtains, cookies. The Grandfather who taught about the car and the mechanics. The Grandfather who guided around the parents. The moral compass - this is where adult people see. Who provided what no one else applauded. Framework to say - this is a safe place. This place knows integrity, honor, reliability, diligence and Jesus.
Pigpen - this might be your spouse and you say - we will not go there. This might be your parent - who changes your course of direction. This might be the grandchild who has been bartered away by parents having a good time. But where Jesus would love - we will go there.
Why? Don't we really Believe God. I do. I want my today to have struggles having meaning, enduring meaning of grit and integrity. I want my life to say, " I believed God."
Because in the end, the one Father - who put me on this mixed up journey called life - is going to call my name and I will go to my Father God. Knowing this life - this long college ride of good, bad, fun and little of both - is going to tell My father what I did to my soul and to help those around me have His Eternal Life because of His Love.
Father God has said, where we lead the people, birds will gather.
Some days this is noble and pure and the birds are noble Eagles.
Other days all complain life isn't fair and we need to take and shirk. This is where the Vultures gather.
And then other days - wild unexplained problems will occur and these dark birds wildly attack are actually the visible signs of the ongoing Spiritual Battle God says is real and is the show of good and evil battling. Do not be alarmed at fiery trials.
And then, I want to be able to put all this - in more Capable and Loving Hands - the Hands that Gave Life - Jesus' Hands. Jesus who worked to do not His own Will and turn aside. Jesus who works so we know Father God.
Abba, Father, Into Your capable Hands, we place our today and all our cares where we will believe Your best is our today and our tomorrow. In Jesus. Amen.
♔ Lord Jesus Saves! †