From: Su Min
Tuesday 12th November 1996
GREETINGSMy dearest friends and family, in Bangkok, Calgary, Chicago, Hong Kong, Honolulu, Kent, Leicester, London, Manila, Nottingham, Perth, Singapore, Toronto, Wellington, (and where else have I missed out?:
USA towns, many, yah?)
CHICKEN SOUP IS GOOD FOR YOUParticularly when you were down with a cold or feeling poorly, down and out...
Every Jewish and Yiddish mother keeps a big cauldron of chicken soup for the family..
Then came "Chicken Soup for the Soul": a touching collection of heart-tugging mini essays: a runaway best seller: Soon there was a Second Serving of chicken soup for the soul, and a Third, and now variations on the theme plus plus,..
Pop down to your local bookstore for a serving... meanwhile:
Now you will feel no rain
for each of you will be shelter to the other
Now you will feel no cold
for each of you will be warmth to the other
Now there is no loneliness
for you, for each of you will be companion to the other.
Now you are two bodies,
but there is only one life before you.
Go now to your dwelling place,
to enter into the days of your togetherness.
And may your days be good, and long upon the earth.
Apache Matrimonial Blessing: Quoted in Chicken Soup For Woman's Soul 1996, Page 131.
TEXT FOR TODAYThe passage for today is Matthew_14:34-36 (See also Mark_6:53-56,_John_6:22-John_7:1)
The next day the crowd that had stayed on the opposite shore of the lake realised that only one boat had been there, and that Jesus had not entered it with his disciples, but that they had gone away alone (John_6:22) Then some boats from Tiberias landed near the place where the people had eaten the bread after the Lord had given thanks. (John_6:23) Once the crowd realised that neither Jesus nor his disciples were there, they got into the boats and went to Capernaum in search of Jesus (John_6:24)
When they had crossed over, they landed at Gennesaret.(Matthew_14:34) When they had crossed over, they landed at Gennesaret and anchored there (Mark_6:53)
As soon as they got out of the boat, people recognised Jesus. (Mark_6:55) They ran throughout the whole region and carried the sick on mats to wherever they heard He was (Mark_6:55)
And when the men of the place recognised Jesus, they sent word to all the surrounding country. People brought all their sick to him. (Matthew_14:35)
and begged him to let the sick just touch the edge of his cloak, and all who touched him were healed. (Matthew_14:36)
And everywhere he went, into villages, towns or countryside, they placed the sick in the market places. They begged Him to let them touch even the edge of His cloak, and all who touched Him were healed. (Mark_6:56)
CONTEXTJesus had fed the multitude of 5000 men (women and children besides) with the miracle of five loaves and two fish. The miracle continues today, as we bring our inadequacies to Jesus and let Him use us to feed His sheep. Jesus went up the hill to pray, while the disciples rowed across the lake. He walked across the lake to join them, as they were struggling against the winds and the waves. They finally recognised His deity and worshipped Him. Then they reached the northern shore at Gennesaret, next to Capernaum.
INSTANT RECOGNITIONAs soon as they got out of the boat, people recognised Jesus.
It did not take decades of study, interrogation and meditation for the people to get to know and recognise Jesus. The fame of the Great Healer had preceded Him.
There was an awareness of what He could do. Anticipation was in the air. The people expected Him to turn up somewhere soon. The people were looking out for Him. And when the saw Him, they recognised Him immediately. As soon as they (Jesus and the crew) got out of the boat, people recognised Jesus.
Mini-lesson 1: Your present encounter with Jesus: Do you recognise Him?
Mini-lesson 2: His Second Coming: Are you eagerly anticipating?
INSTANT RESPONSEAnd when the men of the place recognised Jesus, they sent word to all the surrounding country. They ran throughout the whole region and carried the sick on mats to wherever they heard He was. People brought all their sick to him.
This was a case of people hungering for bread, and when they found the source of bread, they sent word to all the surrounding country and they ran throughout the whole region to tell people where to find bread and they sought out the needy and brought the needy to the supply.
...and begged Him to let the sick just touch the edge of His cloak, and all who touched Him were healed.
They brought hungry people to the Bread of Life, and Jesus met them at their point of need. Such faith they had. Not even a touch of His gentle hand was required. They merely desired to be allowed to touch the edge of his cloak.
And all who touched Him were healed.
Mini-lesson 3: Having recognised Jesus, what do you do?Recognising Him as Bread of Life, and feeding upon Him, would you not rush off to bring others to feed?
Mini-lesson 4: Those that were brought:Witness their faith:
a) their needs were recognised by their friends
b) their friends brought them to Jesus
c) they anticipated Jesus would fill their needs
d) they trusted Jesus so much, that a mere touch of his garment was suffice to bring healing
TOUCH THE EDGE OF HIS CLOAKDearly beloved, do you for one moment think that there was anything miraculous within the edge of his cloak, that a touch of it brought healing? I think not. But rather the miracle is in the strength of faith: and Jesus honours the faith expressed by the touching of the edge of his cloak: Jesus performs the miracle and meets the faithful at their point of need. He heals them. All who touched Him were healed. All who touched the edge of His cloak were healed. All who expressed deep faith were healed.
DO YOU NEED HEALING?Beloved, the edge of the cloak of Jesus is there for you to touch. It is there, spread around the shadow at the foot of the cross on Calvary. His cloak is there, rising to fill the temple (Isaiah_6:1). Come to the throne of grace and enter his presence. Come, and He will heal.
Plagued with a deadly sin that will drag you to the depths of hell? Jesus promises you abundant life, now and forever more. Loneliness, bitterness, anger, frustration, directionless? Surrender all at His feet. Come, all who are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.
BENEDICTIONHe will wipe every tear from their eyes.
There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.
To him who is thirsty I will give to drink without cost from the spring of the water of life.
Glory and Majesty, Power and Dominion are yours!
Forever and ever, AMEN!
Father thank you for the lesson today.
May we eagerly look out for our encounter with Jesus.
May we have the humility to confess our sins when we meet Him.
May we be filled with compassion for others who have not heard the gospel.
Fill us with fire to spread the good news In the name above all names: JESUS
For any comments or enquiries please write to Dr. Lim Su Min
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