Tuesday, May 17, 2011
~ "Souvenirs here..."
Lord, have mercy on my son: for he is lunatick, and sore vexed: for ofttimes he falleth into the fire, and oft into the water. (17:15)
The advertisement is for "Tour Israel" - the slogan is "What makes the miracles of Jesus more miraculous? Standing where they happened." I have to tell you that I was a little dismayed. Making a pilgrimage to Israel because that is where the miracles of Jesus happened is, at the very least, false advertising. Yes, I get it - I "get" the significance of walking on the very ground that our Lord walked. Seeing the places I read about in my Bible come to life before my eyes. No - I have never been and the truth be told, I don't really have a desire to go for the reasons the travel agents think that I should. If I ever do go, it will not be on a site-seeing tour, looking for the plaques that read "Jesus Ate Here" or "On this site, Jesus gave a blind man sight."
I have seen the power of God at work in those around me. I have seen the sick healed (on more than one occasion, might I add). I have experienced things that psychiatrists would deem as coming from a deranged mind. I have felt the presence of God in my life more times than I could count.
We are not "more blessed" if we journey to Israel and walk the steps that Jesus took to the cross so long ago. We are blessed simply because we were there that day - we are the reason He came to earth in the first place. We are the reason He preached. We are the reason He went to the cross. His stripes were put there for our benefit. The nails that pierced His hands and feet were driven through his flesh by our sins. That nasty crown of thorns has been replaced - He is the King of Glory and now wears a crown greater than any other.
Each day, Jesus offers you His greatest miracle - the one many fail to understand, the one many believe is an inherent right, the one that cost the most - eternal life! That miracle is performed (if that's an appropriate choice of words) each and every day, on every continent, in every nation, in every city and in every heart! Don't allow the enemy to tell you that it's not offered to you - it's offered to everyone! Grab a hold of it and don't let go! You don't need a tee-shirt that reads "I've Been to Gethsemane"...it will be written on your heart forever.
Make the pilgrimage that means something...accept the one miracle that is offered to you, personally! Accept the gift of life from the giver of life and your soul will read: "Jesus lives here!!!"