When the men were come unto him, they said, John Baptist hath sent us unto thee, saying, Art thou he that should come? or look we for another?
And in that same hour he cured many of their infirmities and plagues, and of evil spirits; and unto many that were blind he gave sight.
Then Jesus answering said unto them, Go your way, and tell John what things ye have seen and heard; how that the blind see, the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, to the poor the gospel is preached.
And blessed is he, whosoever shall not be offended in me.
When Darkness Comes...
The Scriptures are filled with accounts of hoplessness that is encouraged and then fufilled.
Adam and Eve lost one son to murder and the other ran away out of guilt. Soon after, Seth was born.
Abraham and Sarah were promised a son, but Issac didn't show up for decades after the promise was made.
Ruth and Namomi were both poor widows with no hope. The Tishbite woman was starving. The woman with the issue of blood had been sick for 12 years.
We read and hear about these accounts and we are fortunate because we get the good news in the next paragraph or chapter. We are on the other side of the miracle, the lighted side, so we can see the results.
But, we have to know that there was times of doubt and that all of these people went through. Like us when we are trapped in our sorrow, everyone of them spent time in the darkness of total loss before they saw the light of the miracle.
John the Baptist had spent his whole life heralding the arrival of Jesus. He saw Him coming, literally and figuratively. But, held up in a dark prison for telling the truth, he had a moment of doubt. He sent his disciples to Jesus to make sure that He was in fact, The One.
Martha and Mary buried their brother, Lazarus 4 days before Jesus arrived. If he died on a Sunday, Jesus didn't show up until Thursday. I am certain that somewhere between Monday night and Tuesday morning, they realized that Lazarus was truly dead and that he wouldn't come back and that, in their minds and hearts, Jesus had let them down. They didn't know the Light had come to turn their mourning into dancing even when Jesus was in the room.
They were in the shadow of their miracle.
When light first comes in, it casts long shadows. Those shadows disapate as the light is lifted high. But, like sunrise, at the beginning, there is still alot of darkness, and if you're behind a mountain, or under a burden, you might not see the light at all. Where do you think the phrase "darkest before the dawn" comes from.
Dear ones, there is no shame in disparing in the darkness. Our Savior Himself had to be encouraged as He faced His final hours. He was caught in the darkness that preceeded the dawn of His resurrection. He dispaired. He was encouraged. He went on fufilling the will of the Father. We have eternal life from the light of His obedience.
It's a wonderful thing to be on the mountaintop, but the most beautiful flowers, the life-giving rivers and the richest soil where things grow and flourish are usually in the valley. So, if you find yourself in darkness today, or if you love someone who's in the valley, remember, the light is coming. Just hold on, and keep looking to the top of the hill. If you don't have the strength to hold on or look up, then make sure you have friends and loved ones who can do it for you. It's okay to mourn a broken heart. Just be open to receive when the healing comes.
The sun is coming. It's here. You just can't see it yet. It's on the other side of your miracle.
Jesus said, Take ye away the stone. Martha, the sister of him that was dead, saith unto him, Lord, by this time he stinketh: for he hath been dead four days.
Jesus saith unto her, Said I not unto thee, that, if thou wouldest believe, thou shouldest see the glory of God?
Then they took away the stone from the place where the dead was laid. And Jesus lifted up his eyes, and said, Father, I thank thee that thou hast heard me.
And I knew that thou hearest me always: but because of the people which stand by I said it, that they may believe that thou hast sent me.
And when he thus had spoken, he cried with a loud voice, Lazarus, come forth.
And he that was dead came forth, bound hand and foot with graveclothes: and his face was bound about with a napkin. Jesus saith unto them, Loose him, and let him go.
I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help.
My help cometh from the LORD, which made heaven and earth.
He will not suffer thy foot to be moved: he that keepeth thee will not slumber.
Behold, he that keepeth Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep.
The LORD is thy keeper: the LORD is thy shade upon thy right hand.
The sun shall not smite thee by day, nor the moon by night.
The LORD shall preserve thee from all evil: he shall preserve thy soul.
The LORD shall preserve thy going out and thy coming in from this time forth, and even for evermore.
-Sis. Stephanie Robinson
Lifeline is the evangelistic ministry of Fellowship Church in Jonesboro, GA.
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455 HWY 138 Suite C
Jonesboro, GA 30238
Alton Watkins, Pastor