September 15, 2011
“I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you…” (Ephesians 1:18 NIV)
Friend to Friend
An African tribe viewed a film about the life of Jesus, The Jesus Film, in their own heart language. As a follow-up, another ministry, Faith Comes by Hearing, provided the tribe with a contraption called a “recorder.” Most of the world can neither read nor write, so the recorder allows the tribal people to be discipled by listening to the New Testament in their own native tongue. It runs off of solar power and will play the New Testament 1,000 times. (For more on these two incredible ministries see www.jesusfilm.org and www.faithcomesbyhearing.com)
A group of listeners gather round to listen to the story of Jesus healing a demon-possessed man recorded in Luke chapter 8.
They (Jesus and his disciples) sailed to the region of the Gerasenes,which is across the lake from Galilee. When Jesus stepped ashore, he was met by a demon-possessed man from the town. For a long time this man had not worn clothes or lived in a house, but had lived in the tombs. When he saw Jesus, he cried out and fell at his feet, shouting at the top of his voice, "What do you want with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? I beg you, don't torture me!" For Jesus had commanded the evil spirit to come out of the man. Many times it had seized him, and though he was chained hand and foot and kept under guard, he had broken his chains and had been driven by the demon into solitary places…
Jesus demanded the demons to come out of the man and cast into a herd of nearby pigs. Then the pigs rushed down a steep hillside and into a lake and drowned.
The tribal community was stunned as they listened to this story. They knew the value of one pig, much less an entire herd.
“Why would Jesus do that?” they asked. “Why would He allow their entire source of income to be destroyed?”
Many questions stirred among the group. Then the wise chief spoke. “Perhaps Jesus is showing us that one human soul is worth more than an entire tribe’s economy,” he said.
I was silenced by his answer. That passage had been quite mysterious to me for many years. But God revealed this powerful truth to one little African chief hearing the story for the very first time. The chief understood just how valuable we are to God.
Heavenly Father, thank You for revealing Your truth to the babes in Christ when so many of the studied miss it. Open my eyes to see and your truth, rather than become satisfied with predigested truth from the many teachers around me. Help me to be as this tiny tribe, and listen in awe as if I were hearing the gospel for the very first time. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Now It’s Your Turn
I’m wondering, in light of our economic situation, do the words of the chief stir you as much as they do me?
In light of the chief’s words, do you spend more time being concerned with the souls of mankind or money? Which consume most of your prayer time?
Let’s chat. Tell me one reason you know that you are valuable to God at www.facebook.com/sharonjaynes.
More from the Girlfriends
I love stories, don’t you? I have an entire book of short devotional stories that illustrate Scriptural truths titled Extraordinary Moments with God. Check it out at www.sharonjaynes.com
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