Friday, November 02, 2007

Star gazer

Grand Sweep Daily Reading: Acts 13, 14, 15; Proverbs 1

Proverbs 1:7 (NIV)

7 The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and discipline.

Acts 13:46-49 (NIV)

46 Then Paul and Barnabas answered them boldly: “We had to speak the Word of God to you first. Since you reject it and do not consider yourselves worthy of eternal life, we now turn to the Gentiles. 47 For this is what the Lord has commanded us: ‘I have made you a light for the Gentiles, that you may bring salvation to the ends of the earth.’” 48 When the Gentiles heard this, they were glad and honored the Word of the Lord; and all who were appointed for eternal life believed. 49 The Word of the Lord spread throughout the whole region.

Good morning!

Last night, I witnessed an amazing phenomenon with my very own eyes. Looking through the lens of a large telescope, I was able to see Comet Holmes for myself. On October 24th, this comet brightened dramatically, by almost a million times, overnight. It quickly became the focus of astronomers worldwide. Never before has a comet appeared quite like this one. I observed the nucleus of the comet to be perfectly round, surrounded by a colorful, circular halo. The comet was bright and clear, with no visible tail. As I watched in absolute awe, Holmes’ comet appeared to be growing larger as time passed on. My New Testament professor said that a dramatic change within the comet’s size and structure might indicate a prelude to some sort of cataclysmic event. I spent last night in absolute wonder, gazing up at the clear night sky, while watching God’s amazing light show unfold.

Are you a star gazer?

Paul, Barnabas and John Mark traveled into the higher elevations of Pisidia Antioch, in Galatia, to take the Gospel message to the Jews. When they rejected their teaching, Paul preached to the Gentiles, as the Lord had instructed him to do. The stars were out in full force, and the Word of God was falling upon hungry hearts, longing to know the God who not only loves them, but saves.

Knowledge begins with a healthy fear of the Lord. We learn from our mistakes and misperceptions. For instance, when a young toddler reaches out and touches a hot stove, burning their inquisitive fingertips, they will remember the pain and pay closer attention to a loving parent who tells them, “Don’t touch!” When we experience for ourselves the struggles that come from despising wisdom and discipline, we learn, in a very real sense, what it means to gain knowledge in the fear of the Lord. The Jews refused to open their hearts to God’s Word. With blinders securely fastened about their eyes, they railed at Paul and his message of redemption. Yet, when Paul and Barnabas and John Mark offered the salvation message to the Gentiles, they jumped at the chance to experience the living Christ in their lives. It was as if an incredible phenomenon was occurring in the hearts of people everywhere. Like an exploding comet in the sky, God’s message was being transmitted and received throughout the world.

What is it like to experience the risen Christ up close and personal? Have you seen Him with your very own eyes?

God’s grace and forgiveness is extended to all people who will call upon the name of Jesus in faith and in love and raise Him high as Lord of all. The stars are out tonight, and God is seeking the hearts of all who will look up and behold His amazing, wondrous love. Are you longing to know Him even more? Do you seek to gain greater understanding of who Jesus is and what He has done for you?

Come outside and take a long look into the beautiful sky above. The hand of the Lord is upon us all. His Word is exploding around the world as we share the Gospel message with all who will hear. Will you open your heart to His Word today? Be a star gazer. Come outside and take in the amazing handiwork of the Lord!

Grace and peace,

Deb Spaulding

Faith UMC - St. Charles, MO

Pray for: the amazing, phenomenal work of Jesus Christ, to save your soul, and bring you into intimate relationship with the creator of the world. God is calling to you today. Will you take time to look up and see the stars bursting overhead?


© Copyright 2007, Deb Spaulding

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