In Luke 13, Jesus saw a crippled woman who had been bent over for 18 years; He called her to Himself and healed her. The ruler of the synagogue was indignant, not because He healed her but because He healed on the Sabbath. Jesus replied, "Hypocrite! Does not each one of you on the Sabbath loose his ox or donkey from the stall, and lead it away to water it? So ought not this woman, being a daughter of Abraham, whom satan has bound—think of it—for eighteen years, be loosed from this bond on the Sabbath?" (vs. 15-17).
Think of the people you know who are bound by satan, suffering, and in desperate need of a touch from God. Are we willing to get out of our comfort zone, past our old way of thinking and let go of whatever traditions or ways of man that hold us back from allowing the Lord to use us to bring His Kingdom onto this earth as it is in Heaven?
What are we afraid of? Are we afraid of OFFENDING the people around us? Are we afraid that the sick won't be healed? Are we afraid that those bound by satan won't be set free? Are we afraid that those bent over won't be made straight? You see, if we pray and it doesn't happen, we'll be disappointed, feel embarrassed, feel like a failure, or worse, our faith may even be challenged.
With these fears brewing in our minds, it's easier to pray, "Lord, if it's Your will..." This is how we rationalize it in our minds. If we pray with that (no faith) phrase as our safety net, then we won't get our hopes up, and if we don't get our hopes up, then we won't be let down. But our hope is in God, it doesn't have anything to do with us, but it has everything to do with Him. Unfortunately, the devil is trying to get us to lose sight of this. It's a very subtle shift, but may we hear what the Spirit is saying.
In Acts 5:12, Scripture tells us that through the hands of the apostles many signs and wonders were done among the people. Hallelujah—that's just what Jesus said would happen (see John 14:12).
The only place in the Bible where we see the phrase, "Lord, if You are willing..." is coming out of the mouth of someone stricken with leprosy (Matthew 8:2). For the Hebrews, leprosy was a dreaded condition which left its victims ceremonially unclean—that is, unfit to worship their King (see Leviticus 13:3).
Jesus told us that if we believe in Him, we will do these greater things. Believing in Him means that we believe He has done it all. Believing in Him means that we can't mess it up and we can't conjure it up, because it's all about Him. It means that we know that we have nothing to add or subtract from the finished work of the Cross in order to gain our salvation or to see a miracle manifested. He has done it all, and all He is asking us is to do is to take His place as His priests.
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