Posts Tagged ‘miracles’

Jesus and the disciples are playing basketball on the Temple Courts. James and John are arguing about who’s going to be captain of their team.

Jesus: Hey, guys! Wanna see a miracle?

Disciples: YEAH!!! Give us a miracle!

Jesus: Watch this. From behind the three-point line.

Jesus shoots and the ball becomes wedged between the rim and backboard. He puts his hands up and does a victory dance.

Silence.

Thomas: That ain’t no miracle.

Bartholomew: That’s a little lame.

Jesus (jumps and punches the ball out): Okay. Who want’s to try to match me. I’ll give you a $1000 and 1000 tries.

Jesus sits down on the sideline and sips his PowerAid (blue).

Peter steps up to the three-point line and shoots. Others line up behind him. Jesus leans back and rolls his eyes.

Clank. Bounce. Boing. Swish. Airball…

After about an hour or so the Disciples are wearing out.

Peter: Jesus, how come we can’t do this? It’s impossible!

Jesus (smiling): Peter, some shots can only be made with much prayer and fasting…

John: What about Russ Westbrook’s shot in game 3 of the NBA playoffs? He did what you did.

Jesus: So it’s not impossible, is it?

Thomas: It’s so improbable as to be impossible.

Jesus (walking over and circling up the group): When people witness the unbelievable, it becomes undeniable. You are going to see a lot of this. Everything is in the Father’s hands. If there’s one chance in infinity that something can happen, then there’s infinite chances it will.

James: What?

Jesus (throwing him a towel): There’s no such thing as ‘chance’ with the Father. He palms the universe.

Jesus takes the ball and throws it over his shoulder and the ball sticks again.

Disciples: Wow! It’s a miracle!

 

Tr8: God directs outcomes. You take the shot. Miracles are happening all the time. It’s a matter of perspective.

 

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The Father-Son-Spirit idea the Disciples embraced had tension — life comes from living in the Spirit, who is Christ, who is the Father, who can be known, who is love.

John tells us over and over Jesus said he and the Father were one. According to John, Jesus said he only did what the Father told him to. Jesus believably lived out God’s character before Jews, Greeks, and Romans for about three years. The first church was watching and taking notes.

After Jesus demonstrated the Father’s love, he stuck around a month or so, then, ascended to the Father. According to most creeds, he’s sitting at the right hand as we speak. He left the Spirit to handle things here.

Jesus and the Father upstairs. Spirit downstairs.

These days, I think the Spirit gets ignored a lot. Everyone’s looking upstairs. Wondering about what’s going on up there–what’s God up to? Is Jesus vacuuming heaven with the angels? Are they watching us?

We can’t see because we’re downstairs.

The Spirit is downstairs. With us.

If we’ll tune into the Spirit maybe some really crazy spiritual things could start happening on earth again.

The 1st Century church understood a lot. They followed Jesus and saw his spirit in action — a spirit focused on the Father — and Jesus trained them to be like himself. They could say, “Oh! See that? THAT is SO Jesus!” They knew how to be SO Jesus, too.

In The Acts of the Apostles, one of the things that stands out (and confuses us) is that the Holy Spirit was observable. Paul and Barnabas come back to Jerusalem and tell the home team, “The Gentiles? They’ve got it.”

Got what?

I’m guessing here, but I think they saw people “doing” Jesus. They saw Christ in someone else. They were so familiar with Jesus’ way, truth, and life (John 14:6) they could spot it anywhere. When believers got really good at doing Jesus, wired into the Father’s love, they started to heal, raising folks from the dead, turn bottled water into Sangria, and spoke in tongues (I don’t know what that means, but I know the Disciples saw Jesus do it).

Don’t see much of this today.

Because we don’t have enough faith? No, because we don’t have enough Spirit. We wouldn’t know Jesus if he thumped us on the noggin. I think it’s because we’re all standing around looking upstairs, trying to imagine Jesus, the Father, streets of gold, etc. When the Spirit is here, in the house.

Tr8: Take the slack out of your relationship with the Spirit.