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Don’t Miss It!

“Those who passed by hurled insults at Him, shaking their heads and saying, ‘So! You who are going to destroy the temple and build it in three days, come down from the cross and save yourself!’” Mark 15:29

I read this passage this morning and was immediately frustrated with these people. They were witnessing the front end of the greatest miracle that would ever take place, the most inexplicable act of love that any human being would ever perform, and they were blind to it, callous to it, even disgusted by it. Why? Because they didn’t have their facts straight! They were operating on second-hand information that was grievously skewed by an incorrect pronoun and an inaccurate verb.

“Jesus answered them, ‘Destroy this temple, and I will raise it again in three days.’” John 2:19

Jesus didn’t say that HE would destroy the temple (which was a metaphor for His body, not the actual temple) and BUILD it again in three days. He told THEM to destroy the temple and promised to RAISE it again in three days, which He did, in short order!

If those poor saps at the foot of the cross—not even stopping at the foot, staring up at the Messiah in awe, but PASSING BY—had understood what was going on, they would have been filled with an overwhelming, scalp-tickling sense that the scene before them was one of history-altering significance, life-changing relevance.

They might have held their breath. They might have wept. They might have glimpsed the bigger picture and taken hold of their eternal salvation like the thief on the cross, but they PASSED BY to go get groceries or make dinner or something else completely ridiculous and mundane in light of what was happening at Golgotha. They missed it!

I can’t help but wonder how often we do the same thing. How often do we, relying on what someone else says God said to them or an inaccurate meme posted on Facebook/Instagram, miss what God is doing simply because we haven’t taken the time to get our facts straight, to think, to notice, to take in, to ponder and work out our own faith with fear and trembling. I have a sick feeling that it happens pretty often.

Preachers are great. Sunday school teachers are fabulous. Parents who love the Lord and back up their decisions and discipline with Scripture are a rare and fading treasure. However, no one is perfect. We all make mistakes (When I think of some of the Bible studies that I led early on in our ministry, I want to throw up. How arrogant I was to assume that I knew so much!), and we all interpret what we hear and read in the Bible through the filter of our present circumstances, no matter how objective we try to be. Add to that the fact that the human tongue is far less eloquent than the Holy Spirit in communicating the profound and unsearchable wisdom of God, and we have a little problem.

I can tell you what I believe the Bible says. I can tell you what God is doing in my life. I can give you advice based on the Scripture that I know and am able to remember in the moment, but I can’t be the Holy Spirit in your life, no matter how badly I might want to be sometimes. That task has already been assigned.

This being true, my prayer for you today (and for myself) is that you will stop, open your eyes to what God is doing around you, soften your heart to the Holy Spirit, listen with discernment, and study the Bible for yourself instead of allowing those who think they know to feed you intravenously whatever they wish. 

God is working miracles in the hearts of those who let Him today, friend.  Pay attention.  Don’t miss it!

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