What He COULDN’T do….
He turned water into wine.
Multiplied fish and loaves to feed thousands.
Healed sick people.
Raised individuals from the dead.
Walked on water.
Drove demons away.
Caused money to appear out of a fish’s mouth.
Sensed people’s thoughts.
There wasn’t a lot that this God-man, Jesus, couldn’t do. In fact, some would argue that there’s NOTHING that He couldn’t do.
But right there, tucked between healing a woman who had been bleeding for 12 years and raising a little girl from the dead, and then sending out his followers to go do the same, it says it:
“He could not do any miracles there…” Mark 6:5 NIV
And there are areas of my life, and I’m sure in yours, in which I wonder, “Why Lord? Why don’t you change this in me? Why don’t you work in this situation?”
And, my guess is, it is for the same reason that Jesus couldn’t do any miracles there.
You see, Jesus was in his hometown. He was a familiar face. His name was a common one. His family was known, his background was known. He had been placed in a safety zone of predictability by the people around him.
“Isn’t this the carpenter? Isn’t this Mary’s son and the brother of James, Joseph, Judas and Simon? Aren’t his sisters here with us?” And they took offense at him.” Mark 6:3
And for those of us who were raised in a Christian home, or have lived in a culture of Christianity, we might just do the same. Jesus becomes predictable. He becomes confined. Confined to Sunday morning worship services, our even to our morning quiet times, or to the One we pray to before meals or at bed. We believe He’s still there, just like his fellow towns people believed he was there, and probably expected him to be a good, moral, kind, humble individual, just like he had been for the past thirty years. But what if He is ready to do things beyond the box we have confined Him to. And it is our unbelief that keeps Him from doing so…
He could not do any miracles there…..He was amazed at their lack of faith. Mark 6:5,6 (NIV)
“…he marveled at their UNbelief.” Mark 6:6
Its not that we’re purposely choosing not to believe him….no, it usually comes in the form of a gradual shift of gaze to circumstances instead of to His power, and a gradual dwindling of expectation. Its not so much disbelief, but a slip-in-the-back-door-prefix unbelief, meaning not, absence of, lack of
And his townsfolk had fallen into such a predictable rhythm with him there, a faint presence in the background of their daily lives, that they did not expect him to do anything out of the ordinary.
And we too, get lulled into rhythms of life, jobs to work, school schedules to keep up with, bills to pay, friends to spend time with and we know his faithful presences is faintly there in the backdrop of it all. And, not by our disbelief, but rather our non belief, or non expectation, it ends up that,
that is where we keep Him.
in the backdrop
in the predictable
tucked away in the rhythms of our lives, and our agendas, and our needs.
But this little story in Mark, shows us that
Jesus shows up where he’s expected to.
And I want to wake up each morning expecting to see Jesus do miracles today in and through a fatigued body that needs a God-out-of-the-box to work miracles in my kids lives, in my home life, on my street, in my neighborhood.
I want to wake up to each day and expect Jesus to work resurrection power in a marriage that needs alot of death to self, mainly in myself.
I want to wake up each day in humble expectation that Jesus can and will cast off the strongholds of food reliance and self-image obsession fromone weary individual.
I want to wake up in expectation that Jesus’ hands reaching and love extending can and will happen through me, despite being in a state of such weakness, to those individuals who have yet to hear of His Power and Resurrection or to the weary saint that needs His Voice of encouragement.
I want to watch in expectation for Him to show up.
May simple non-belief not be the box that keeps this Amazing, All-Powerful, Always-Moving, Always-Working God-Man Jesus from doing miracles in my life, through my life and throughout my home, hometown, and nations.
…in the morning I lay my requests before you, and wait expectantly. Psalm 5:3
But as for me, I watch in hope for the Lord, I wait for God my Savior;
My God will hear me. Micah 7:7
I wait for the LORD, my soul waits, and in his word I hope; Psalm 130:5
But when you ask [God], be sure that you really expect Him to answer, for a doubtful mind is as unsettled as a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind. People like that should not expect to receive anything from the Lord.” James 1:5-6 NLT