God who relates personally

Then Jesus placed his hands on the man’s eyes again, and his eyes were opened. His sight was completely restored, and he could see everything clearly. Jesus sent him away, saying, “Don’t go back into the village on your way home.”
(Mark 8:25-26  NLT)

Faith Building Exercise
Some people brought a blind man to Jesus because they had heard about His power to heal and restore. They would have brought him with a genuine concern, having faith in Jesus. Or they would have done it to test Jesus. But Jesus do not go by what others say or do. He helps in strengthening the faith of those who are sincere. He interacts individually and relates personally to those who genuinely seek Him. So He takes the blind man by his hand and leads him out of the village, away from the crowd and does this faith building exercise. Jesus is asking the man whether he could see anything. Initially the man gets a partial vision and could not distinguish trees from people. This propelled his faith in Jesus. Jesus lays His hands on the man again and restores his sight fully. He was advised not to go back to the old company of people, in stead to his home.

There are times and situations when we are thrust into the presence of God. God uses such situations to build our faith in Him, step by step. He is a loving God who meets with us individually, leads us away from faith-destroying company or circumstances, and interacts personally to strengthen our faith. He will remove our blindness, rectify the partial vision and restore clear vision. Thank God for such occasions. 

Focus Losing Utterances

Then he asked them, “But who do you say I am?” Peter replied, “You are the Messiah.” But Jesus warned them not to tell anyone about him. Then Jesus began to tell them that the Son of Man must suffer many terrible things and be rejected by the elders, the leading priests, and the teachers of religious law. He would be killed, but three days later he would rise from the dead. As he talked about this openly with his disciples, Peter took him aside and began to reprimand him for saying such things. Jesus turned around and looked at his disciples, then reprimanded Peter. “Get away from me, Satan!” he said. “You are seeing things merely from a human point of view, not from God’s.”
(Mark 8:29-33 NLT)

Peter was outspoken and impulsive on many issues. This could prove dangerous at times. With the same mouth we utter things that show our conviction as well as prove our being out of focus. Peter was rebuked for not catching God’s vision.

Those who have been given sight can loose their vision of God’s kingdom and behave like the faithless blind. Then God will rebuke us and correct us so that we remain focused on our mission. Thank God for such occasions in our lives.

Faith Testing Occupation
We are called to follow Jesus Christ. He made claims that no man could ever make, but He never gave false promises to His followers. He openly told that the path will be tough and demanding, even costing our very life. However, He assured us that a life sacrificed for His sake is more precious than the whole world. He will be proud to announce in the glorious presence of the Father that they are His own.

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