Blessed… You Are Loved

When Jesus went to Capernaum, a centurion approached, pleading with him, “Lord, my servant is flat on his back at home, paralyzed, and his suffering is awful.” Jesus responded, “I’ll come and heal him.” But the centurion replied, “Lord, I don’t deserve to have you come under my roof. Just say the word and my servant will be healed. I’m a man under authority, with soldiers under me. I say to one, ‘Go,’ and he goes, and to another, ‘Come,’ and he comes. I say to my servant, ‘Do this,’ and the servant does it.” When Jesus heard this, he was impressed and said to the people following him, “I say to you with all seriousness that even in Israel I haven’t found faith like this.  I say to you that there are many who will come from east and west and sit down to eat with Abraham and Isaac and Jacob in the kingdom of heaven.  But the children of the kingdom will be thrown outside into the darkness. People there will be weeping and grinding their teeth.” Jesus said to the centurion, “Go; it will be done for you just as you have believed.” And his servant was healed that very moment (Matthew 8:5-13, Common English Bible).

I am currently preaching a sermon series titled, “Seven Essential Questions.” This Sunday’s sermon title is, “Am I Accepted?” My Scripture text will be John 8:1-11, the story of the woman caught in adultery. But, it also could have been this story.

The centurion, who wants Jesus to heal his servant doesn’t want Jesus to come to his home. Who knows, maybe he didn’t clean house before he left to find Jesus and is too embarrassed to have Jesus over for a visit. What we do know is, he doesn’t believe he deserves to have Jesus over and says as much.

In truth, he is right. He didn’t deserve to have Jesus over to heal his servant or to come over for a cup of coffee or to have dinner. But, here is a news flash for all of us. We aren’t worthy of that either!

What is interesting, however is, Jesus had a habit of going to visit with the people who aren’t deserving. Zacchaeus was a guy who believed himself to be so unworthy, just to have a chance for a glimpse of Jesus he climbed a tree. When Jesus announced he was going to Zacchaeus’ home, Zacchaeus went about trying to clean up his mess. Truly, Zacchaeus wasn’t worthy even after trying to make things right. It was absolutely a step in the right direction, but he still wasn’t worthy, at least not on his own.

Jesus is who made Zacchaeus worthy. If the centurion in today’s lesson would have allowed it, Jesus would have made him worthy too. Jesus was impressed with the guy for having a faith that knew healing was possible even via long distance, but Jesus actually makes the centurion worthy. Jesus makes us worthy too.

Jesus making us worthy can be summed up in one word, grace and it comes by faith. The centurion had faith in Jesus and Jesus can use that faith to make the person worthy. It’s grace. And just as the centurion can become worthy, so can we. It doesn’t happen because of anything we do. It happens because Jesus responds with grace to the faith in our hearts.

How do you know yourself to be worthy of the grace of Jesus Christ?

Have a blessed day in the Lord.

Joy, Peace and Thanksgiving,
Keith

Copyright 2017, J. Keith Broyles, All Rights Reserved

Published by drjkbroyles

I love Mike Ashcraft's book, "My One Word." For the past nine years I have participated and encouraged others to participate to in the "My One Word" Challenge. My first word was discipline was my word the first year. Since then my word has been focus, sight, jungle, peace, concentration, serve, genuine and this year is fit. I seek to be fit for my health, my family, my church, my ministries. I seek to be fit in any are of my life where God might point to me. I also have a nickname, "Dr. B." When I was a public high school teacher, Dr. B. is what most of my students called me, at least in my presence. I am still called that by many people though I no longer teach in public schools. I am the author of "Average Joe: With an Extraordinary Story" (available on Amazon). The book fits into the genre of "Biblical Fiction" or "Christian Fiction" and features some of the Bible's lesser known characters. The name of my blog is, "Fork in the Road." Life is filled with forks in the road. It isn't a matter of if we encounter a fork in the road, but when will we and how many will we experience in a lifetime. I love to strum my guitar. I am not a great guitar player but I enjoy it. I also enjoy writing music. I get excited with I feel a new song emerging. I live with my wife Cindy and our little dog, "Bishop" in Lufkin, Texas. I spent the past 30 years as a United Methodist pastor, serving churches all over east and southeast Texas, from just north of Tyler to south of Houston, from the Gulf Coast to east of Madisonville. I currently serve Perritte Memorial UMC in Nacogdoches. I spent one year in the classroom, teaching High School government, economics, psychology, and sociology. Cindy and I have been married for 43 years. We have two grown sons and six grandchildren, three boys and three girls. I enjoy preaching and all it's aspects from research to writing to the actual preaching event. I also love writing, reading. I have dabble in drawing and "painting" with pastels as well as woodworking and woodcarving. My current projects are two ukuleles. I collect, repair and restore guitars too. I play the guitar (badly, but I still do) I also enjoy working with paracord on various projects, mostly prayer ropes I usually give away. I hold an Associate of Applied Science Degree in Business Data Processing, from San Jacinto College in Pasadena, TX, a Bachelor of Science in Political Science with a minor in History from Sam Houston State University in Huntsville, TX, a Master of Divinity from Southern Methodist University in Dallas, TX and a Doctor of Ministry from Carolina University of Theology. This blog started out as devotional writings. In August of 2020, I made a major change to the blog, switching to a daily theme format. Sunday Sermon-usually my manuscript sermon Miscellaneous Monday-misc. writing, poetry, ministry Tuesday Thoughts-Devotion Wed. with Wesleys-hist. & theol. of early Methodists TED Talk Thursday-Video & appl. in current theology Five for Friday-5 things I've seen & my thoughts Sing-Along Sat. - Usually a new song I have written I write, "Strumming a G-Chord with Dr.B." to get my thoughts onto something permanent. After all, they say, once something is on the internet it never really goes away. Still, I hope you enjoy reading it. Who knows, it might generate a bit of discussion between you and me and anyone else who might make their way here. Seeking the Genuine, Keith Lufkin, Texas August 2020

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