Tuesday, March 21, 2017

March 21

Numbers 32:1-33:39; Luke 4:31-5:11; Psalm 64:1-10; Proverbs 11:22

Today is one of my daughters’ birthday. Last night we had a party for her and we decorated with pictures of her at various stages of her life up to this point. We celebrated her life and all that God has done in it. We had visual and verbal reminders of God’s goodness to us in her life. The Israelites do much the same, recounting God’s goodness and provision to them. Many times throughout Scripture they remember God’s faithfulness in the past through stories and the retelling of their history. Today we see them creating a sort of map of all their travels thus far. Starting in Egypt, they make a recording of every stop they made, until they come to where they are now. I fully believe this act of recounting and remembering is key to our spiritual health today. It gives us perspective. It cultivates a heart of gratitude.  It reminds us that God has acted on our behalf, that he will continue to act on our behalf.

When I read through the New Testament reading for today, I am struck by how prevalent and powerful the healing acts of Jesus are. What would it have been like to witness those amazing healings? What would my response have been? And what about Peter and James and John? Their response to Jesus’ miracle of the huge catch of fish was that they “pulled their boats up on shore, left everything and followed” (Lk. 5:11). I love the definitiveness of their actions. They knew they had met someone amazing, someone with authority, someone with power to change their lives. So they docked their boats, walked away from their entire livelihoods, and followed Jesus. Often times when I read this, I feel some small twinges of guilt. Have I pulled my boat up? Have I left everything? Do I follow him? I mean, I have young children, I can’t leave them. I have a mortgage, a husband, a steady job. Do I love these more than Jesus?  Where are you asking me to follow you, Lord? How does that look in my life?

When we ask those questions, I believe the Lord is so faithful to show us where we need to pull our boats up. He shows us just what it looks like for each of us to leave everything and follow him. It’s different for each of us just as it was different for people back in Jesus’ day. Jesus didn’t tell Simon’s mother-in-law to leave her house and family to follow him. She simply served him where she was. We don’t know what the man in Luke 4:35 did after the demon was cast out of him, but we do know that the “news about [Jesus] spread throughout the surrounding area” (Lk. 4:37). Maybe he went around recounting the amazing and miraculous work of God in his life right there in his hometown and in surrounding villages.

Lord, I do want to follow you, with all my heart. Show me what that means, how that looks. Help me to daily recount your past and present faithfulness in my life. As I do that, I know that I also help to spread to good news about you to those around me.

- Mary Matthias

How did God speak to you in Scripture today? Click here to share your reflections on God's word or read past posts. We'd love to hear from you. 


  1. I love the way the Israelites document & memorialize places they've been and important events, whether with a pile of rocks or a serpent on a stick! They have festivals & celebrations to help them remember! I like that! Outside of Christmas, Easter...etc, our family has established a couple memorial traditions unique to our family and they have become very special to us. I recently made a timeline of my life, marking on it milestones & big events, whether they were blessed events or painful events!! Shocking & very interesting. What I discovered is that some of my most painful events have produced some of my greatest blessings in life.

    Recently We have "pulled up our boat" of ministry primarily in the local church & community exclusively, to follow God's calling to help train pastors & their wives in the US & Africa. Who would've ever thought we would park our boat in our 60's & change directions for a new adventure? I always thought that by this time my boat would be retired & resting in the safe harbor of the local church somewhere!
    I pray that I can always be "green & sappy" as Psalm 92:12-15 tells me, so that I can be fruitful in my old age!

    1. Thank you so much for you honest and joyful participation in the blog. You comments are enriching. And I LOVE that you've found your 60's to be filled with adventures for the Lord. Yes, green and sappy!

  2. Yes, thank you for sharing your story and encouraging all of us through recounting the ways you have seen God's abundant goodness throughout your life. Women like you are truly showing us of a younger generation what it means to follow Jesus whole-heartedly for all our lives. May I be willing to sail or dock my boat at any time in my life as I listen for His call to follow him.