I recently wrote about a sermon I heard by Matt Chandler. The key point was that we should enter in to God’s house with a sense of expectancy. We often enter His house very calmly and not expecting to see a work of God happen among our midst there. I also touched the point of coming into His house empty spiritually, by either not being devoted to His word throughout the week or not living out the life He has charged us to live. Today’s post is somewhat similar but more about coming to Christ than to church.
You have recently become homeless, you have no means of income which means no means of food. You find yourself in the doldrums of life with no money and no food. Your only option is to find food, but how? So you scrounge around looking for any and all kinds of scraps thrown out by people in a much better state than you. You finally find a source of food, not good food by any means, but food none the less. As you begin to take a bite you are immediately told by the one throwing the food out that you are not allowed to eat of it and that it was intended for another.
Heartbreak. You were so close, you desired just a bit of food yet you were told “no”.
This is similar to the situation that a young woman found herself in in Mark chapter 7.
She wasn’t homeless and her search was not for physical food but for the heavenly touch of a gracious God.
25 But immediately a woman whose little daughter had an unclean spirit heard of him and came and fell down at his feet. 26 Now the woman was a Gentile, a Syrophoenician by birth. And she begged him to cast the demon out of her daughter.
She was not looking for a hand out she just wanted her daughter to be healed of this unclean spirit. No pride, no ego, just a humble cry of a mom for her ailing daughter. She looked for healing but gets this belittling response:
27 And he said to her, “Let the children be fed first, for it is not right to take the children’s bread and throw it to the dogs.” For a time the gospel was for Jews only, so they were the children that deserved the food first.
The Jews had the first shot at Jesus. He came to save them yet they did not receive Him with gladness. All others were overlooked for a time because His intent was for the Jews first, thus rendering this poor woman outside of the realm of “Jewish”. But seeing the way in which the gospel was refused by the Jews she responded.
28 But she answered him, “Yes, Lord; yet even the dogs under the table eat the children’s crumbs.”
The Jews were around the gospel so much, their bellies full with truth, there appetite longs for more of the word, right? No. They were saturated with the presence of the son of man, so much so in fact that they seemed to slip into a season of lethargy. They did not long and hunger for all that they had been given, they just wanted some. Their time was spent in the synagogues their youth spent in memorizing the torah. All this access to the truth yet there continued to be left overs. Left overs that passionate, God seeking people like this young mother were anxiously waiting to receive.
In this day and age we are surrounded by the truth, yes we are surrounded by darkness also, but the word has never been more easily accessible than it is today. There are countless apps, online resources, podcasts, and so many different translations to boot. Yet we continually leave spiritual scraps. We leave church and do nothing. We read scripture and repeat nothing. With so much access you’d think we are over fed when in fact we’re under eating. We need to continually pursue Christ and His word like the woman anxiously waiting for a taste of the Gospel, for the power of God to be seen, for the Holy Spirit to descend on her. While we sit in church applying none of it there are millions of souls not in our sanctuaries perishing in monumental numbers. What are we going to do about it?
I pray that you would join in passing the word to those who don’t have it. If you would commit to this could I get a response email? Just to keep in prayer with you so that we can strengthen eachother and by the will of God see things change around here. If you are willing to do that my email is firstname.lastname@example.org.