Emotionally complex

 

At times I can think that I am brave and at other times the trait is nowhere to be found. Thomas reminds me of that. It was he who was faced with the possibility of dying should they return to Judea to see Lazarus that piped up and said, if we die, we die with him.

Put Thomas in the middle of persecution and somehow he lost a step. He was not in the room when Jesus first appeared to the disciples.

Now Thomas, one of the twelve, called the Twin,[d] was not with them when Jesus came.  So the other disciples told him, “We have seen the Lord.” But he said to them, “Unless I see in his hands the mark of the nails, and place my finger into the mark of the nails, and place my hand into his side, I will never believe.” – John 20:24-25 ESV

I am sure that his moment of bravery and his moment of doubt should not define him. I have moments I am proud of and other moments that I wish I could forget. What I do know is that when I am walking with Jesus, He brings out the best in me and my faith is strong and sure. Conversely, when I am away from Jesus, it triggers doubt.

That is where David went – He knew God was the creator of the world. He knew that it was a foundational truth to rest his faith in. I am sure that as a disciple of Jesus I need to believe who He is as well as what He has done. He has the authority and power to save me because He is omnipotent and omniscient. He spoke and it existed.

Let them praise the name of the Lord!
For he commanded and they were created. – Psalm 148:5 ESV

I think that is why it is important and powerful to begin and end each day with thanks. In fact, it might be a radical way to live – because being thankful drives me into the world of hurt with a larger sense of hope.

He has raised up a horn for his people, praise for all his saints, for the people of Israel who are near to him. Praise the Lord! – Psalm 148:14 ESV

Where there are disciple-making movements we need to pray. Pray that those involved will delight and find comfort in Christ alone. Pray that there will be no deterring from continuing to fight the good fight. Thomas has been known to have shared the gospel with Persia and then India. In India he was martyred for his faith. Even if I am emotionally complex, in God’s hand I am His purpose for the world I live in and I am so thankful I can be what He wants me to be.

 

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No division

 

I was reading up on some Shakespeare pieces as there was pointed out to me that he was not free to put God in any of them but alluded to things about God in them. In particular, I wanted to read The Phoenix and the Turtle as there was a stanza there about the Trinity.

So they lov’d, as love in twain 
Had the essence but in one; 
Two distincts, division none: 
Number there in love was slain. – Shakespeare, The Phoenix and the Turtle 
I see the math dynamics for sure and if I were to read some of the Trinity pieces in the same era as Shakespeare I believe I would understand the counterparts even better.  I do understand John much better and I think this explains just how united and close the Trinity operate together in community.
I do not ask for these only, but also for those who will believe in me through their word, that they may all be one, just as you, Father, are in me, and I in you, that they also may be in us, so that the world may believe that you have sent me. The glory that you have given me I have given to them, that they may be one even as we are one, I in them and you in me, that they may become perfectly one, so that the world may know that you sent me and loved them even as you loved me. Father, I desire that they also, whom you have given me, may be with me where I am, to see my glory that you have given me because you loved me before the foundation of the world. – John 17:20-24  ESV
Could it be that Jesus selection of disciples were so radically different in temperament, personality and political philosophy – so that because of their glaring differences, their unity was so evident.
Jesus desires unity, closeness and a love with His disciples and that love reflects the very same love in the Trinity.
Notice how different this prayer was from the one in which He taught the disciples to pray.
“The request of our Lord thus given in John’s seventeenth chapter is clearly no prayer of an inferior to a superior: constantly there is seen in it the co-equality of the Speaker with The Father. The Two have but one mind… Where the Son speaks He is not seeking to bend The Father to Him: rather is He voicing the purpose of the Godhead.” – Trench
The message to me as a disciple is this – without love and without unity I do not deserve credibility.
Unity does not mean uniformity, but rather to remain in love, in spite of tensions and conflicts. The unity in love revealed in the Trinity is the model for communities – no division.

The advantage of believing in the Trinity is not that we get an “A” from God for knowing the right answer. The advantage of believing in the Trinity is that we then live as if the Trinity is real, as if the cosmos around us is actually beyond all else a community of unspeakable magnificent personal beings of boundless love, knowledge and power. – Dalles Willard

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