Monday, February 4, 2013

Ministry Out of the Norm

And again He entered Capernaum after some days, and it was heard that He was in the house. Immediately many gathered together, so that there was no longer room to receive them, not even near the door. And He preached the word to them. Then they came to Him, bringing a paralytic who was carried by four men. And when they could not come near Him because of the crowd, they uncovered the roof where He was. So when they had broken through, they let down the bed on which the paralytic was lying.
When Jesus saw their faith, He said to the paralytic, “Son, your sins are forgiven you.”
And some of the scribes were sitting there and reasoning in their hearts, “Why does this Man speak blasphemies like this? Who can forgive sins but God alone?”
But immediately, when Jesus perceived in His spirit that they reasoned thus within themselves, He said to them, “Why do you reason about these things in your hearts? Which is easier, to say to the paralytic, ‘Your sins are forgiven you,’ or to say, ‘Arise, take up your bed and walk’? 10 But that you may know that the Son of Man has power on earth to forgive sins”—He said to the paralytic, 11 “I say to you, arise, take up your bed, and go to your house.” 12 Immediately he arose, took up the bed, and went out in the presence of them all, so that all were amazed and glorified God, saying, “We never saw anything like this!” Mark 2:1-12

I love this portion of the Word because I have been at this very place in Capernaum. I remember standing in the now White Synagogue that was built on the top of the very synagogue that Jesus preached in Capernaum. The White Synagogue no longer has the ceiling but I stood there thinking about Jesus standing in the same place! It was an amazing time of reflection.

So according to this passage Jesus was preaching to a full and overflowing house. There was no more room! Let me tell you of a personal experience that I had while growing up. My mom could share the love of Jesus to anyone and everyone who would listen. I am sure that she was offensive to some. When I was about nine years old my mom started a prayer meeting. We lived in a tiny farming community called Powell Butte, Oregon. The nearest town was eight miles away. My mom spread the word that she was starting this prayer meeting. None of the people out of the church we attended came to the bible study slash prayer meeting. I remember the apartment above the double car garage being full and overflowing. I remember sitting in the closet during worship literally! My mom's little word of mouth prayer meeting grew to over 150 people. Did I mention that most of these people were not the typical church goers? They were the hippies of the 70's that gathered together and worshipped the Lord and the Lord's presence would show up because they were seeking Him! I remember the Fire Marshal coming out and telling my mom that not another person would be allowed to come because of the fire danger, so she moved the meeting outside in the summer so that if more wanted to come that they could. I remember the police coming and checking my mom out because they thought that there must be some sort of illegal activity going on with all of "those hippies" coming. My mom loved each and everyone. She told them the truth in love. The Word of God was preached and awesome worship was done in harmony. I saw many supernatural things happen during those meetings. God moved.

Back to the says in vs. 2 that Jesus preached the word to the crowd and people came! People were so desperate that when they couldn't get the paralytic to Him they tore a part the roof to get their friend to Jesus. Talk about friends and desperation. They went to drastic measures to help their friend. Now that is good friends! Jesus told the man that his sins were forgiven. The scribes who were witnessing all of this were being critical in their hearts and Jesus knew it! So he addressed their critisims in vs. 9 and 10. Jesus then turned around and healed the paralized man.

I love verse 12, 12 Immediately he arose, took up the bed, and went out in the presence of them all, so that all were amazed and glorified God, saying, “We never saw anything like this!” And ALL were amazed and glorified God.

We are coming to a time where there are hungry people. People who are searching for the truth. They may not be looking in traditional avenues or in traditional ways but there is a need for people to meet and bring the truth to them! Some are so desperate that they are searching in the wrong places and in wrong ways but we need to be willing to overlook somethings and not be so easily offended that we miss opportunities of ministry.

I am so thankful that I got to witness first hand ministry not in the traditional setting. Let me tell you, I heard my mom being criticized by others who were in ministry! Did she quit? No. She knew that these young people needed Jesus even if they were not the ordinary. She loved each and everyone! I heard my mom called names like, witch and heard the rumors that she must be practicing witch craft by other Christians. Shoot, even the police came out to check it out because why else would there be 150 or more people out in the middle of no where?  I knew better because I was there observing Jesus ministering first hand! Things like deliverance, healing and discipling were happening all around. My mom was not "seeker friendly" but she was genuine. She did not sugar coat anything, lol, but she loved them and shared the Word of God.

So be willing to share the Word of God anywhere and everywhere. Do not be critical in your heart. Jesus can and will detect it! If you do get criticized, get over it and do not get hung up on it because that will just get in the way of ministry. Jesus is big. He didn't let the critics stop Him or His ministry. When people saw miracles happening there was no way to deny it. When God moves, He moves. Just make sure that you don't miss it when He does because it doesn't fit inside your box :)

Excited about what is going to happen!


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