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Saturday, March 1, 2014

Synapses, Spark Plugs..and Faith

 Faith is the spark that ignites the impossible and causes it to become possible.

Rick Renner 

I am no more a neurologist than I am a mechanic, but I can recognize a principle of creation in operation. What synapses, spark plugs, and faith have in common is gaps. 

Gaps compel ideas, electricity, and information to leap from transmitters to receptors. In the brain, the gaps are called synapses, the tiny spaces between neurons that carry messages. In some cars, the spark plug forces electricity to arc across a gap, carrying power to get the engine running. 

In our spiritual life, the gap between what we see and what we hope for is the energy called faith.

This principle became clear to me as I considered Jesus’ responses to John the Baptist and Peter at the times when they most needed encouragement. Luke reported that John sent two of his disciples to Jesus to inquire if he was “the One,” the awaited Messiah. John had baptized his cousin, Jesus. He had marveled that it was Jesus who came to him to be baptized. 

But from Matthew’s account we learn John was now in prison. So, “before He answered John’s messengers, Jesus cured many from various diseases, health conditions, and evil spirits. He even caused many blind people to regain their sight” (Luke 7:21, The Voice). Then, Jesus turned back to John’s followers and said, “Go and tell John what you’ve witnessed with your own eyes and ears: the blind are seeing again, the lame are walking again, the lepers are clean again, the deaf hear again, the dead live again, and good news is preached to the poor” (Luke 7:22-23, The Voice).

Instead of simply answering John’s question, He sent John a message that would compel him to do the only thing that mattered. It was a message of hope that would cause John's faith to spark across the divide between his sensory experience and the unseen kingdom of God.

When Peter denied being a follower of Jesus the very same night he’d sworn it would never happen, I imagine he felt pretty worthless. Jesus knew how Peter would feel as much as he knew what Peter would do. To restore him after His resurrection, Jesus sent a messenger to, “Tell his disciples and Peter that he's going ahead of them to Galilee. There they will see him, just as he told them” (Mark 16:7 God’s Word Translation). 

Jesus didn’t just appear to Peter and the others to encourage them. He sent them a message that would stir their faith to spark across the gap from their current state of grief and disbelief to hope in the resurrection.

Before the sun disappears, it colors the world with encouragement.
Of course, it was their choice to not exercise faith, just as it will always be ours. His miraculous power is always available to us, but it will always depend on our allowing faith to leap across the divide between our experience and what we hope for. 

Walking in the promised land of God depends entirely on faith for every step. 

Psalm 27:13
I would have despaired unless I had believed that I would see the goodness of the Lord In the land of the living (New American Standard Bible).

Matthew 9:28
When He entered the house, the blind men came up to Him, and Jesus said to them, "Do you believe that I am able to do this?" They said to Him, "Yes, Lord” (New American Standard Bible). 

Matthew 17:20
Believe me when I tell you, if your faith is only as big as a mustard seed you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. You will be able to do anything (Easy to Read Version).

Hebrews 11:1
Faith is the confidence that what we hope for will actually happen; it gives us assurance about things we cannot see (New Living Translation).

Hebrews 11:6
It’s impossible to please God apart from faith. And why? Because anyone who wants to approach God must believe both that he exists and that he cares enough to respond to those who seek him (The Message).

Excerpt from: 
While it is Called Today: a 30-day photo devotional for living well 
by Dee Marvin Emeigh

(c) 2014 Dee Marvin Emeigh

all rights reserved

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