April 25, Saturday

UPDATED Today’s Spiritual Food for Thought, written by Pastor Sam Lee who leads Catalyst Agape Church in Northern New Jersey, was first posted on October 23, 2013.  He is a graduate of University of Wisconsin (B.A.) and Biblical Theological Seminary (M.Div.).

Spiritual Food for Thought for the Weekend

“Be Aware of the Devil’s Clever Trick; Don’t Lose Your Mission Over It”

John 4:31-35

Meanwhile the disciples were urging him, saying, “Rabbi, eat.” 32 But he said to them, “I have food to eat that you do not know about.” 33 So the disciples said to one another, “Has anyone brought him something to eat?” 34 Jesus said to them, “My food is to do the will of him who sent me and to accomplish his work. 35 Do you not say, ‘There are yet four months, then comes the harvest’? Look, I tell you, lift up your eyes, and see that the fields are white for harvest.

josh-silver-rUjd20KwCRY-unsplashIntroduction: To the extent that going through trials and tribulations increases people’s receptivity toward anything that promises hope, the post COVID-19 world will likely present churches with an unprecedented opportunity to win people to the Lord through the preaching of and living out the gospel.  With that in mind read Pastor Sam’s blog.

This passage, where Jesus talks to the Samaritan woman in John 4, inspires me regarding missions. When Jesus reached out to the Samaritan woman, he broke the boundaries of ethnicity, culture, hatred and conflict, and issues between the male and female sexes. Although his disciples forgot their sense of missions and were more concerned about what they should eat for lunch, Jesus told them, “My food (my mission) is to do the will of Him who sent me to finish His work.”

The disciples probably thought that this was not the time to do missions, especially not in Samaria. So, to them, it was neither the right place nor the right time to reach out; rather, it was time to eat.  And, more than anything else, she was not the right person, not this Samaritan woman, “for”, as John noted, “Jews have no dealings with Samaritans” (Jn. 4:9).

What am I getting at? You know, we are just too smart for the devil to convince us that we shouldn’t make disciples –we will never accept that.  But “we are not unaware of his schemes” (2 Cor. 2:11), for what the devil does is to whisper into our ears, saying, “Don’t do it here; don’t do it now; and not that person.”  Yet, if we can’t or won’t make disciples here and now, we will not be able to make disciples in another country, or in the post COVID-19 America that may make us feel as if we are living in a different country.  Be aware of the Devil’s clever trick; don’t lose your mission over it.

In closing, note that as soon as the Samaritan woman put her faith in Jesus, she immediately reached the whole town: “Many of the Samaritans from that town believed in Him because of the woman’s testimony” (John 4:39).  This is to say, for the Samaritan woman whose life was as broken as yours or that of someone you know, now was the right time, the right place, and the right people whose lives were just as broken as hers.  The post-COVID 19 America—full of broken lives—will be the right time and place to preach and live out the good news of Jesus Christ.

Prayer: Lord, remind us to start praying for the harvest of lost souls.  Lord, motivate us to desire a life of sowers and reapers of your gospel in the post COVID-19 America.  Seriously!  Amen.   

Bible Reading for Today: Acts 27-28.

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