41 And when he drew near and saw the city, he wept over it, 42 saying,
“Would that you, even you, had known on this day the things that make for peace! But now they are hidden from your eyes. 43 For the days will come upon you, when your enemies will set up a barricade around you and surround you and hem you in on every side 44 and tear you down to the ground, you and your children within you. And they will not leave one stone upon another in you, because you did not know the time of your visitation.”
45 And he entered the temple and began to drive out those who sold, 46 saying to them, “It is written, ‘My house shall be a house of prayer,’ but you have made it a den of robbers.”
47 And he was teaching daily in the temple. The chief priests and the scribes and the principal men of the people were seeking to destroy him, 48 but they did not find anything they could do, for all the people were hanging on his words.
22 “The Lord brought me forth as the first of his works, before his deeds of old; 23 Ages ago I was set up, at the first, before the beginning of the earth.
24 When there were no depths I was brought forth, when there were no springs abounding with water. 25 Before the mountains had been shaped, before the hills, I was brought forth, 26 before he had made the earth with its fields, or the first of the dust of the world.
27 When he established the heavens, I was there; when he drew a circle on the face of the deep, 28 when he made firm the skies above, when he established the fountains of the deep, 29 when he assigned to the sea its limit, so that the waters might not transgress his command.
When he marked out the foundations of the earth, 30 then I was beside him, like a master workman, and I was daily his delight, rejoicing before him always, 31 rejoicing in his inhabited world
and delighting in the children of man.
32 "And now, O sons, listen to me: blessed are those who keep my ways. 33 Hear instruction and be wise, and do not neglect it.
34 Blessed is the one who listens to me, watching daily at my gates, waiting beside my doors. 35 For whoever finds me finds life and obtains favor from the LORD, 36 but he who fails to find me injures himself; all who hate me love death."
I have a sarcastic, favorite person in my life - for many decades. He says people do not change. I have a realist who sweeps up and makes all things new to the best of her ability. And has decades where she wandered. Today, news arrived she has regrouped - recovered - regained ground - found her joy - found her compassion.
This passage is perfect for today:
Jesus is recognizing - in this passage - what the view looks like - not as a 33 year old Jesus - as Jesus of Genesis 1 - let there be "Light of mankind. True Light of true light. Light of the world."
77 to give his people the knowledge of salvation
through the forgiveness of their sins,
78 because of the tender mercy of our God,
which the rising sun will come to us from heaven
79 to shine on those living in darkness
and in the shadow of death,
to guide our feet into the path of peace.”
Jesus is very boldly telling, not of the view of a 30 year old. Revealing Jesus as God. Before Abraham. Telling us of His unborn Church in Caesarea.
Proverbs 8 Jesus delights in the children of man. And Jesus has said:
24 But Jesus did not entrust Himself to them, for He knew all men. 25 He did not need any testimony about man, for He knew what was in a man.
Both viewpoints - the balanced viewpoint of Father God.
This brings us to Lent and our life journey.
How would we survive Lent, if we not adopting Jesus' viewpoint. John 14,15,16 and 17 display deep abiding Joy of Jesus in this life - Jesus provides for us. Jesus is the Future and Good - Jesus wills for us. Jesus is not whitewashing - sugar coating - Jesus is based in facts and actions of His gift of a new Heaven to Father God. A new earth for mankind's voyage to Jesus Christ.
We will all have "Days will come upon you". And Jesus has said, in weeping, He understands depth of grief. He tells us do not mourn as those with no hope. How could we, the Beloved of Jesus, ever watch "The Passion of Christ" without Easter and the healed Jesus moves with Grace.
This voyage. We are under the hope life will not change. And will. We see old people in hospitals not surrounded with loved ones scattered far away. We find Rehabilitation Hospitals are not visiting centers - the elderly fear to visit as if it was contagious. The grieving widow is too sorrowful to bear.
And why should we look at this? Because from this - new life arrives. My mother recovers and as she does, her friends surround her. Her hearing returns. Her hope.
And what about for the younger generations? Even for the very, very famous - set backs can take years to recover from. The stars do not just bounce from marriage to marriage. Child loss is devastating. Child illness is life consuming. The truth is life is not ripe for opportunities all the time. The narrow gate. Why?
To have Gratitude. To have hope. We act as we believe. If we believe God has hope for us - we act accordingly. We appreciate the Gifts God has given us. We do not treat what God has given as something to throw away or disdain. We have Life - abundant Life - appreciating what we have had and what we will have.
We appreciate today. Jesus would have us do what with today? Be Grateful. Have the Fruits of the Spirit. Always. Galatians 6 says 2. Carry each other's burdens. 5. Each one should carry their own load.
We all have an opinion on Tomorrow. In Jesus, we have assurance.
They who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.
Jesus has shown us His belief, work, Love, endurance, encouragement, wisdom.
"Days will come"
Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.
And Jesus said to him, “‘If you can’! All things are possible for one who believes.”
Jesus is God's Delight. Jesus has Joy. In His Blessings, Jesus wants to give Blessings. In studying prayer, people who have had a blessing, are very capable of praying this received blessing on to others. Someone healed from cancer, is very effective in praying for cancer. Someone healed of a heart healing, is capable of praying for hearts. Sharing abilities of Jesus - increases Joy.
Our Abba, as we open our hands to You in Prayer. We consider by grace we have been saved through faith. And this is not our own doing; it is the gift of God.
Having gifts, let us use them: in proportion to our faith. And if we know You, Father God, hear us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests that we have asked of You. We will ask for each day, each opportunity, each decision, every day - Father God who gives generously to all without reproach, we will ask for Wisdom and to see Your Willingness and it will be given to Your Beloved.
We ask for this opportunity with our gifts of God. "Give, and it will be given to you. Good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, will be put into your lap. For with the measure you use it will be measured back to you.”
We pray this for our concerns, our lives, our hopes. We pray this over the people we love. The People You have given us. Healing, life, hearing, eyes, provision, opportunities. Hope, Joy, Love. Protection. And for this Nation to love You more. And for the Beloved of God - everywhere to have this of You, their Father.
Always we want to Listen to Jesus. Amen.
♔ Lord Jesus Saves †