Take a look around you, there is someone whose life can be changed or impacted or encouraged by something you will do. Take a look around you, there are neighbors that you could do something and make their day better. Take a look around you, there are coworkers who need you to be a light of hope, a word of encouragement, a helper in their very situation. Take a look around you, your family needs you. Take a look around you, your husband or wife need you. Take a look around as you are going to and fro and see the people you walk or drive by who need a word of encouragement, need a hand up, need help. Hope can you make a difference today?
We can all make a difference!
Today’s reading starts with an example after Jesus dies on the cross…
The Burial of Jesus
(Matthew 27.57-61; Mark 15.42-47; John 19.38-42)
50-51There was a man named Joseph from Arimathea, a town in Judea. He was a good and honorable man, who was waiting for the coming of the Kingdom of God. Although he was a member of the Council, he had not agreed with their decision and action. 52He went into the presence of Pilate and asked for the body of Jesus. 53Then he took the body down, wrapped it in a linen sheet, and placed it in a tomb which had been dug out of solid rock and which had never been used. 54It was Friday, and the Sabbath was about to begin. 55The women who had followed Jesus from Galilee went with Joseph and saw the tomb and how Jesus’ body was placed in it. 56Then they went back home and prepared the spices and perfumes for the body. On the Sabbath they rested, as the Law commanded. –from Luke 23
Can you share your faith with them? Share that hope that is within you because of Jesus! Faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see. Maybe that is what they are missing? Remember the guy whose legs were paralyzed from when he was born? Remember how he begged daily looking for a little something to make it through each day? Do you remember the day he had that diving encounter? Do you know the story of what happened the day Peter and he met? Peter told him in faith… “Silver or gold I do not have, but what I do have I give you. In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, walk.” Do you remember the difference that made to that man? “7And seizing him by the right hand, he raised him up; and immediately his feet and his ankles were strengthened. 8With a leap he stood upright and began to walk; and he entered the temple with them, walking and leaping and praising God.” It’s amazing what can happen with a little bit of faith!
In our reading today, it continues on the theme of faith from Hebrews 11 (continued from yesterday’s reading)
17It was faith that made Abraham offer his son Isaac as a sacrifice when God put Abraham to the test. Abraham was the one to whom God had made the promise, yet he was ready to offer his only son as a sacrifice. 18God had said to him, “It is through Isaac that you will have the descendants I promised.” 19Abraham reckoned that God was able to raise Isaac from death—and, so to speak, Abraham did receive Isaac back from death. 20It was faith that made Isaac promise blessings for the future to Jacob and Esau. 21It was faith that made Jacob bless each of the sons of Joseph just before he died. He leaned on the top of his walking stick and worshiped God. 22It was faith that made Joseph, when he was about to die, speak of the departure of the Israelites from Egypt, and leave instructions about what should be done with his body. 23It was faith that made the parents of Moses hide him for three months after he was born. They saw that he was a beautiful child, and they were not afraid to disobey the king’s order. 24It was faith that made Moses, when he had grown up, refuse to be called the son of the king’s daughter. 25He preferred to suffer with God’s people rather than to enjoy sin for a little while. 26He reckoned that to suffer scorn for the Messiah was worth far more than all the treasures of Egypt, for he kept his eyes on the future reward. 27It was faith that made Moses leave Egypt without being afraid of the king’s anger. As though he saw the invisible God, he refused to turn back. 28It was faith that made him establish the Passover and order the blood to be sprinkled on the doors, so that the Angel of Death would not kill the first-born sons of the Israelites. 29It was faith that made the Israelites able to cross the Red Sea as if on dry land; when the Egyptians tried to do it, the water swallowed them up. 30It was faith that made the walls of Jericho fall down after the Israelites had marched around them for seven days. 31It was faith that kept the prostitute Rahab from being killed with those who disobeyed God, for she gave the Israelite spies a friendly welcome. 32Should I go on? There isn’t enough time for me to speak of Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, David, Samuel, and the prophets. 33Through faith they fought whole countries and won. They did what was right and received what God had promised. They shut the mouths of lions, 34put out fierce fires, escaped being killed by the sword. They were weak, but became strong; they were mighty in battle and defeated the armies of foreigners. 35Through faith women received their dead relatives raised back to life.Others, refusing to accept freedom, died under torture in order to be raised to a better life. 36Some were mocked and whipped, and others were put in chains and taken off to prison. 37They were stoned, they were sawed in two, they were killed by the sword. They went around clothed in skins of sheep or goats—poor, persecuted, and mistreated. 38The world was not good enough for them! They wandered like refugees in the deserts and hills, living in caves and holes in the ground. 39What a record all of these have won by their faith! Yet they did not receive what God had promised, 40because God had decided on an even better plan for us. His purpose was that only in company with us would they be made perfect. –from Hebrews 11
Faith can make a difference! Your faith can make a difference in the lives of others! (Their faith…)
Do you need words of wisdom? Turn to God’s Word! Do you need a word of wisdom for today? Turn to God’s Word!
Today’s reading goes into the book of Proverbs and speaks this to me…
1The wicked run when no one is chasing them, but an honest person is as brave as a lion. 2When a nation sins, it will have one ruler after another. But a nation will be strong and endure when it has intelligent, sensible leaders. 3Someone in authority who oppresses poor people is like a driving rain that destroys the crops. 4If you have no regard for the law, you are on the side of the wicked; but if you obey it, you are against them. 5Evil people do not know what justice is, but those who worship the Lord understand it well. 6Better to be poor and honest than rich and dishonest. 7Young people who obey the law are intelligent. Those who make friends with good-for-nothings are a disgrace to their parents. 8If you get rich by charging interest and taking advantage of people, your wealth will go to someone who is kind to the poor. 9If you do not obey the law, God will find your prayers too hateful to hear. 10If you trick an honest person into doing evil, you will fall into your own trap.The innocent will be well rewarded. 11Rich people always think they are wise, but a poor person who has insight into character knows better. 12When good people come to power, everybody celebrates, but when bad people rule, people stay in hiding. 13You will never succeed in life if you try to hide your sins. Confess them and give them up; then God will show mercy to you. 14Always obey the Lord and you will be happy. If you are stubborn, you will be ruined. –from Proverbs 28
What if we all tried to make a difference? What if we all filled up in the morning and then started to pour into the lives of those we meet? What if we went out of our way to make a difference in the lives of those close to us? Family, Neighbors, co-workers?
We can make a difference!
As I looked for an image for my featured image, I found https://youtu.be/rkvzK1oOX6o