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September 26, 2022 — Who and What do you have on First?

“Are you much of a baseball fan?” Stan asked me one morning.

“Not really,” I replied. “Maybe I will watch a few games when it gets time for the championship, but I’m not a big fan. How about you?”

“About the same,” Stan replied. “I don’t have a favorite team and I don’t watch many games, but there is something I really enjoy about baseball.”

“What’s that?”

Rather than answering, he asked me another question. “Have you ever seen the comedy routine called ‘Who’s on First’?”

“I have,” I replied. “I’ve seen it on the internet. It’s a hilarious routine by Abbott and Costello concerning who is on the different bases in a baseball game. It’s old, but is still very funny. What brings that up?”

“It came to mind earlier this morning when I was journaling about something the apostle Paul wrote to the church in Colossae.”

“I would guess that Paul was not writing about baseball or comedy routines,” I said with a smile.

“You’re right,” Stan replied, “but Paul did have something to say that I think is to be an essential part of my relationship to God in Christ.”

“What’s that?”

“Who do I put on first?” Stan replied. “Seems to me that’s what Paul was writing about: who and what do I put first in my life.”

“First in your life?” I said. “Like who’s on first?”

“Exactly,” he replied. “Who and what. Is it God or is it self? Is it what God wants to be first in my life or is something I want to put first apart from Him? Is it the world, or the flesh, or the devil? Or is it all of them and everything except God?”

“Wow,” I replied. “Big questions!”

“Big indeed,” Stan said. “And these questions are ones I need to ask myself regularly as long as God keeps me on this side of eternity.”

“While you wait for the train,” I added with a smile.

“That’s it,” Stan replied. “Seems to me that asking who and what is on first in my life is the essence of being a disciple pursuing discipleship.”

“You mean like denying self, taking up what God has for you to take up, and following Him?” I asked.

“You got it, my friend,” Stan replied with a smile.

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Bible verses to consider:

He is also head of the body, the church; and He is the beginning, the first-born from the dead; so that He Himself might come to have first place in everything.  Colossians 1:18.

And He put all things in subjection under His feet, and gave Him as head over all things to the church, which is His body, the fulness of Him who fills all in all. Ephesians 1:22-23.

And He was saying to them all, “If anyone wishes to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me.” Luke 9:23.

Prayer:  Thank you, Father, that you want to have first place in every aspect of my life while you keep me on this side of eternity. Thank you, too, for providing the Holy Spirit, the Helper, to help me with that. I confess that too often I do not place you first in my life because I do not listen to the Holy Spirit and I choose to put someone or something else first. Too often that “someone” is me. Please forgive the foolishness of trying to live this life without putting you first. I ask for your help so I follow every step of your lead and do, in fact, place you first in all I am and in all I do. Thank you that I can and do bring these prayers before you in the name of Jesus. Amen.

Think on this: Have you placed God first in your life in the sense of having accepted His free and gracious provision of life eternally with Him when it is time? If no, why? What is standing in the way? If you are a Christian with the assurance of salvation and redemption, how are you doing with placing God first in your life while He keeps you here? As well as you would like? As well as God would like? If you sense the need for change in who and what you place first in your life, how is that going to happen? Is that what you want? Why or why not?

September 27, 2022 — Everywhere? Anywhere? Nowhere?

“I was talking with a neighbor the other day,” Stan commented, “about the importance of sharing the Good News of Jesus Christ. He shared with me something from Mark’s gospel that really impacted and convicted him in this regard.”

“What was that?” I asked.

“It’s in the very first chapter of Mark,” Stan said, “right after Jesus called the first disciples. They were in Capernaum by the Sea of Galilee. Jesus went to the synagogue on the Sabbath and was teaching.”

“What was He teaching?”

“I don’t think it says,” Stan replied. “And that’s probably not real important. But there is something that happened at that synagogue in Capernaum that my neighbor said was very important for him. As well, from what he said, I think it’s important for me and each one of us.”

“What happened?”

“The people were amazed at Jesus’ teaching,” Stan said, “and what they did with their amazement is the important point.”

“What’d they do?” I asked.

“It says that immediately the news about Jesus went out everywhere into all of the area around Capernaum, so those people must have gone out and told their family, friends, neighbors, and everyone else. That’s what led my neighbor to ask himself some questions that changed his faith walk.”

“What questions?”

“First,” Stan replied, “he said he asked himself if he is amazed by Jesus’ teaching. Second, he asked himself what is he doing to spread the news of Jesus and what He taught. Is it being spread everywhere, anywhere, or nowhere?”

“Oh,” I said, “those seem like they might be some pretty good questions for each one of us to ask ourselves!”

“‘Seem like’, ‘might be’, and ‘pretty good’? Stan replied. “To me, they are much more than that; they are essential questions we are to ask ourselves.”

“Ask and then do something about the answers,” I said. “Is that it?”

“What do you think?” Stan asked in reply.

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Bible verses to consider:

And immediately the news about Him went out everywhere into all the surrounding district of Galilee. Mark 1:28.

And the report about Him was getting out into every locality in the surrounding district. Luke 4:37.

Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and, lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age. Matthew 28:19-20.

Prayer: Thank you, Father, for the good news of Jesus Christ. Thank you, too, for the people you brought into my life to tell me the truth so I could accept it and know I will spend eternity in your presence when it is time. I confess that too often I do not share the good news with others so they, too, will have the opportunity for life eternally with you, along with the eternal life of knowing you and Jesus on this side of eternity. Please forgive that foolishness. And please, Father, help me follow every step of your lead so I do, in fact, share the good news of Jesus everywhere, not just “somewhere” and never “nowhere.” Thank you that I can and do bring these prayers before you in the name of Jesus. Amen.

Think on this: Have you accepted the good news of Jesus so you know you will spend eternity in God’s presence when it is time? If no, why? What’s in the way of accepting God’s free and gracious provision? If you are a Christian with the assurance of salvation and redemption, how are you doing with telling others about Jesus and the good news? If you sense the need for change in that, how will that happen? Is that what you want? Why or why not?

September 28, 2022 — Lessons in Discipleship are where you find them

“We did something last night that we haven’t done for quite awhile,” Stan commented one morning while we waited for Ricky to bring our breakfast.

“What’s that?” I asked.

“We went to the Good Fortune Chinese Restaurant for dinner,” Stan replied.

“Oh,” I said. “One of my favorites. How was it?”

“The food was excellent, as always,” he replied. “The staff was friendly with great service, but I was somewhat let down by the fortune cookie.”

“Let down by the fortune cookie? Why, what’d it say?”

Stan reached into his shirt pocket and pulled out a little piece of paper. “This is what it says,” he read, ‘When in doubt, be yourself’.”

“When in doubt, be yourself,” I repeated. “That seems kind of innocent. How did it let you down?”

“Seems to me,” he replied, “that it is the exact opposite of what Jesus talked about in being a disciple.”

“Oh,” I said, “you mean like with the first step we are to deny ourselves?”

“That’s it,” Stan replied. “Seems to me I can’t be myself and deny myself at the same time. It’s one or the other, and I prefer what Jesus said.”

“So,” I said, “rather than being yourself when you have any doubt, you think it’s better to deny yourself, turn to God, and let Him answer you about any doubt you might have. Is that it?”

“Bingo and Amen!” Stan said with a smile. “And,” he added, “this little piece of paper showed me that If I have my eyes open to see, God will show me that He has lessons for discipleship all over the place, even in a fortune cookie!”

“So,” I asked, “what if you had been in charge of writing that fortune for the cookie? What would you have written?”

“Whether or not in doubt over anything, deny self,” Stan said. “And, if there was enough room on the piece of paper, I would have added, ‘then take up what you are to take up and follow Jesus’.”

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Bible verses to consider:

If any one wishes to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me. Matthew 16:24.

And He was saying to them all, “If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me. For whoever wishes to save his life shall lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake, he is the one who will save it.” Luke 9:23-24.

Prayer:  Thank you, Father, for showing me that the first step in being a disciple is to deny myself, rather than exert myself as the world encourages. I confess that too often I don’t deny myself, I don’t take up what you have for me to take up, and I don’t follow. Instead, I exert myself, take up what I want to take up apart from you, and I follow whatever I want rather than you. Please forgive the foolishness of that approach in living this life for you and your kingdom. Please help me to follow every step of your lead in being the disciple you intend. Thank you that I can and do bring these prayers before you in the name of Jesus. Amen.

Think on this: Have you accepted God’s free and gracious gift of life with Him eternally so you can be a disciple on this side of eternity? If no, why? What’s in the way? If you are a Christian with the assurance of salvation and redemption, how are you doing with being a disciple by denying yourself, taking up what God has for you to take up, and following Him however, wherever, and whenever? If you sense the need for change in your approach to discipleship, how is that going to happen? Is that what you want? Why or why not?

September 29, 2022 — Going From the “Great Omission” to the Great Commission

“A few days ago,” Stan commented one morning, “I was talking with one of my neighbors about what Jesus said in what is commonly referred to ‘the Great Commission’.”

“Where He said to go into the world, or to ‘all nations,’ and make disciples?” I asked.

“That’s it,” Stan replied. “And my neighbor was saying that he didn’t have the time to do that.”

“Oh,” I said, “I can understand that. I know for me it would be hard to get away. Plus it would be expensive to go to the other side of the world. I’m not sure I could afford that. Is that what your neighbor said?”

“Yeah,” Stan replied, “he said he’s very busy with his job, family, and a lot of other things that keep him close to home. He didn’t specifically mention the expense, but I’m sure that’s a factor also.”

“However,” he continued, “I think he’s missing the point of what Jesus said.”

“In what way?” I asked.

“We don’t all have to go to the other side of the world to proclaim the gospel and make disciples.”

“But that’s what Jesus said, isn’t it?” I replied.

“I don’t think so,” Stan said. “It seems to me that Jesus said to go proclaim the gospel and make disciples. And that ‘go’ may mean the other side of the world, but it may also mean the other side of a room, the other side of the street, the other side of town, or all sorts of ‘other sides’.”

Continuing, he added, “it seems that it could also include going to the other side of me.”

“Other side of you?” I said. “How so?”

“Well,” Stan said, “speaking about the person I know best, there are certainly a lot of times in my life when I need to submit to what God wants to do in transforming me into the image of Christ in being a disciple. It’s like going from the side of me that isn’t very disciple-like to the side God has for me in being a disciple.”

“Like in denying yourself, taking up what God has for you to take up, and following Him?” I said.

“That’s it, my friend,” Stan replied with a smile. “It’s going where He has for me to go, wherever that might be. It’s like going to the Great Commission from the ‘great omission’ of not going anywhere!”

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Bible verses to consider:

Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, . . . . Matthew 28:19.

And He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation.” Mark 16:15.

Repentance for forgiveness of sins should be proclaimed in His name to all the nations, beginning from Jerusalem. Luke 24:47.

And He was saying to them all, “If anyone wishes to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me.” Luke 9:23.

Prayer:  Thank you, Father, for those people who were obedient to you in proclaiming the gospel to me so I could accept your free and gracious provision of life with you eternally when it is time. I confess that too often I do not proclaim the gospel and I do not seek to make disciples because I have too many excuses for not doing so. Please forgive me for ignoring what you have for me to do. Please help me in following every step of your lead so I do, in fact, go into the world to proclaim the gospel and make disciples, wherever that “world” may be and whatever it may look like. Thank you that I can and do bring these prayers before you in the name of Jesus. Amen.

Think on this: Have you responded to the proclaiming of the gospel so you know you will spend eternity in God’s presence when it is time? If no, why have you not responded? Have you not heard of His free and gracious provision? If you are a Christian with the assurance of salvation and redemption, how are you doing in following the “Great Commission” to proclaim the gospel and make disciples wherever that might be? Is it more like the “great omission” in your life? If you sense the need for change so you do proclaim the gospel and make disciples, how is that going to happen? Is that what you want? Why or why not?

September 30, 2022 — Drilling Down with your Thankfulness

“Earlier this morning,” Stan commented while we waited for Ricky to bring our breakfast, “I was reading in the apostle Paul’s letter to the church in Phillipi and I was struck by something I don’t do often enough in my prayers.”

“What’s that?”

“Drill down with my thankfulness,” Stan said.

“Drill down? In what way?” I asked.

“Really looking at,” he replied, “and focusing on all that God’s provision means so I can thank Him.”

“Like make a list of the different things about which you are thankful?” I asked.

“Not so much that,” Stan replied, “but more in the sense of layers of thankfulness.”

“Layers of thankfulness?” I said. “Like being thankful for one specific thing that has multiple aspects to it? You are thankful for a job because it allows you to do such-and-such for which you are also thankful. And that allows something else for which you are thankful. That sort of thing?”

“Yeah,” Stan replied. “That’s what I saw Paul doing in this particular letter. He wrote about sending a fellow named Epaphroditus to the church in Phillipi. Apparently the church knew this fellow and had been concerned that he had been real sick.”

“So?” I replied. “How does some guy who was sick a long time ago have any impact on you today?”

Rather than answering directly, Stan said, “Paul describes the fellow as having been so sick he almost died, but that God healed him.”

“So Paul was thankful for that?” I asked.

“He was,” Stan replied, “but the point that struck me is that Paul also said that he was thankful that God, by healing the sickness, had spared Paul the sorrow he would have experienced if the healing had not occurred.”

“Oh,” I said. “God healed the man, Paul was thankful for that healing, but Paul was also thankful that he did not have to grieve over the man’s death. Is that it?”

“That’s it,” Stan replied. “And this made me think about how way too often I don’t drill down enough in my prayers of thanksgiving to thank God for all that His answers mean. I don’t give enough thought to all the things for which I have to be thankful.”

“Yeah,” I responded, “I see what you mean. Too often I will just thank God for such-and-such without thinking beyond the such-and-such to what the answered prayer means beyond the immediate. But I’m not sure how to do that?”

“For me,” Stan said, “it is helpful if I ask the Holy Spirit to open me to see all for which I have to be thankful — all for which I should thank God so my thankfulness is more complete.”

“And He will do that?” I asked.

“He’s called ‘the Helper’ for a reason,” Stan replied with a smile. “Yes, the Holy Spirit will help me so that so my thankfulness to God is not just casual and shallow, but drills down below the surface.”

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Bible verses to consider:

For indeed he was sick to the point of death, but God had mercy on him, and not on him only but also on me, lest I should have sorrow upon sorrow.  Philippians 2:27.

Rejoice always; pray without ceasing; in everything give thanks; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18.

And I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may be with you forever; that is the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it does not behold Him or know Him, but you know Him because He abides with you, and will be in you. John 14:16-17.

Prayer:  Thank you, Father, for your provision for every aspect of my being, including life eternally with you when it is time, along with the eternal life of knowing you and Jesus while you keep me here. I confess that too often my thankfulness to you is shallow in that I do not give enough thought to all that your provision means. Please forgive me for that. And please, Father, help me to follow every step of your lead in being open to see and understand what your provision means so I can thank you as fully as you deserve and want. Thank you that I can and do bring these prayers before you in the name of Jesus. Amen.

Think on this: Can you be thankful to God for your assurance of salvation and redemption? If no, why have you not accepted His free and gracious provision? If you are a Christian, how are you doing with really thinking about all for which you have to be thankful? Are your expressions of thanksgiving to God too shallow? Do you need to give more thought to all for which you need to express thanksgiving? What is the role of the Holy Spirit in that? If you sense the need for greater thought about being more thankful, as well as how you express that thanksgiving to God, how is that going to happen? Is that what you want? Why or why not?

October 1, 2022 — Refilling the Coffee Cup (Week of September 26, 2022)

Stan’s main takeaway for each day this past week.

The full version of each posting can be found at www.waiting4thetrain.com

Note: Please forward this to friends, family, etc. as a way to introduce them to Stan,  S. Tory Teller, and the conversations about faith, discipleship, and what it means to be a Christian.

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Monday, September 26 (Who and what do you have on first?) — Using baseball and comedy, Stan makes the point that God is to be first in our lives.

Tuesday, September 27 (Everywhere? Anywhere? Nowhere?) — When the people of Capernaum heard Jesus speak, they were amazed and told everyone. Are we amazed? Who do we tell?

Wednesday, September 28 (Lessons in discipleship are where you find them) — A fortune cookie tells Stan to “be himself.” He sees this as contrary to denying himself in being a disciple. How do you see it?

Thursday, September 29 (Going from the “great omission” to the great commission) — Jesus said to go into the world with the truth of the gospel. Are we doing that?

Friday, September 30 (Drilling down with your thankfulness) — It is easy for our thankfulness to God to be shallow without considering all that His blessings mean. We need to look closer!

October 3, 2022 — Content or Contentious?

“Do you remember that the apostle Paul wrote about how he had learned to be content in all circumstances?” Stan asked me one morning while we waited for breakfast.

“Yeah,” I replied, “a little bit. Didn’t he write about that in connection with also writing that he was able to do all things through Christ who strengthens him?”

‘That’s right,” Stan replied. “It’s a powerful statement about the source of our contentment. A source that one of my neighbors seems to really need.”

“How so?” I asked.

“What it looks like to me,” Stan replied, “is that this one particular neighbor, in the exact opposite of what Paul wrote about, has learned to be contentious is every circumstance.”

“Learned to be contentious rather than content?” I said. “What’s that all about?”

“I don’t know what it’s all about,” Stan replied. “All I know is that this particular person can find something wrong with just about everything. If we have a beautiful day, it’s too hot and it will probably rain tomorrow. If the pastor gives a fabulous message, it was too long. You know what I mean.”

“I do know what you mean,” I said. “What do you think we are supposed to do with people like that?”

“Love them,” Stan said. “Pray for them. Encourage them to see what the source of being content is all about. Above all, don’t let their contentiousness and lack of being content pull you down and away from being content.” 

“I’m not sure all that is easy,” I replied.

“I don’t remember anyone saying that it is or is supposed to be easy,” Stan replied. “If it was easy and everyone could do it on their own, there wouldn’t have been any reason for Paul to write about what he did.”

“In what way?”

“That he, as well as we, can do all things through Him who strengthens us. And,” Stan added, “I think ‘all things’ includes this!”

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Bible verses to consider:

Not that I speak from want; for I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am in.  Philippians 4:11.

I can do all things through Him who strengthens me. Philippians 4:13.

That He would would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with power through His Spirit in the inner man. Ephesians 3:16.

Prayer:  Thank you, Father, for the contentment you have provided through the cross of Christ. I am content in knowing I will spend eternity in your presence when it is time. I confess that too often I am not as content as you intend for me to be on this side of eternity. You know, and I know, that the source of such discontentment is self and the self-focused desires to have things only the way I want apart from you. Please forgive the foolishness of trying to live this life you have given to me without being content in all things. And please help me follow every step of your lead in knowing and following the source of all such contentment. Thank you that I can and do bring these prayers before you in the name of the One who strengthens me to do all things. Amen.

Think on this: Are you content for eternal purpose because you know you will spend eternity in God’s presence? If no, why have you not accepted God’s free and gracious provision of life with Him forever? If you are a Christian with the assurance of salvation and redemption, how are you doing with being content on this side of eternity? If you sense the need for change in how you rely on the only Source of true contentment, how is that going to happen? Is that what you want? Why or why not?

October 4, 2022 — Going from Mere to Mirror

You like homonyms?” Stan asked me one morning.

“You mean like with gravy?” I asked.

“No,’ Stan replied. “That’s hominy. I’m asking about homonyms.”

“Oh,” I said. “Sorry, I misunderstood what you said. You mean like two words that sound alike but have different meanings, is that it?”

“That’s it,” Stan said. “I like homonyms and think they can be a lot of fun. Actually I saw one the other day that has importance for my faith walk.”

Even though I knew he did, I asked, “Do you want to tell me about it?”

“Sure do,” he replied. “I think it might help you just as it helps me.”

“Alright,” I said, “let’s hear it.”

“The difference between ‘mere’ and ‘mirror’,” Stan replied. “M, e, r, e” versus a mirror that reflects a person’s image.”

“‘Mere’ versus ‘mirror’?” I said. “What could that possibly have to do with your faith walk?”

“The apostle Paul wrote about he difference between a faith walk that consists of walking as mere men, m, e, r, e, versus one where the walk is as the image or reflection of Christ.”

“Where’d Paul write about that?” I asked.

“The first part, as I see it,” Stan replied, “is where Paul was writing to the church in Corinth about the fleshly desires of some of the people. He said they were walking as mere men, rather than how they should be walking.”

“Walking as mere men,” I repeated. “What’s that look like?”

“Seems to me,” Stan replied, “that Paul described it pretty clearly, that such people were walking according to the desires of the flesh. And, while Paul didn’t mention it, I think he could have easily and correctly added ‘the world and the devil’.”

“The world, the flesh, and the devil,” I said. “If that’s not how we are not supposed to walk as mere men, how are we supposed to walk?”

“As I see it,” Stan replied, “Paul covered that in his letter to the church in Rome where he wrote about how believers are to be conformed to the image of Christ.”

“Conformed to the image of Christ,” I repeated, “so we will reflect His image like a mirror. Is that it?”

“That’s it,” Stan replied. “We are to reflect that image like a mirror so other people will see Christ in and through us.”

“How’s that supposed to happen?” I asked.

“For me,” Stan replied, “I am to be continually guided by the Holy Spirit in answering His question of whether I am walking as a mere man guided by self, or am I a mirror of the Risen Christ reflecting all that He has for me to reflect into the world while I remain on this side of eternity.”

“That sounds kind of like the steps of discipleship we often talk about,” I commented.

“How so?” Stan asked.

“Well,’ I replied, “not walking as a mere man could be like denying myself, and walking as a mirror that reflects the image of Christ could be like taking up what God has for me to take up, and then, of course, following could be like following however, wherever, and whenever He wants to lead.”

“Well spoken, my friend,” Stan replied with a smile.

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Bible verses to consider:

Are you not walking like mere men?  1 Corinthians 3:3.

For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the first-born among many brethren. Romans 8:29.

And He was saying to them all, “If anyone wishes to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me.” Luke 9:23.

Prayer:  Thank you, Father, for your free and gracious provision of life with you in eternity when my time here is completed so that I could receive the Holy Spirit who wants to guide me in all things so I am being who and doing what you intend on this side of eternity. I confess that too often I fail to follow the guidance of the Holy Spirit and choose to walk as a mere person, rather than as the image of Christ. Please forgive the foolishness of those choices based on my self-focus. And please help me follow every step of your lead so I do, in fact, reflect as a mirror the image of Christ rather than the image of self focused on the world, the flesh, and the devil. Thank you that I can and do bring these prayers before you in the name of Jesus.  Amen.

Think on this: Have you accepted God’s free and gracious provision through the cross of Christ so you have the opportunity to spend eternity in God’s presence when it is time? If no, why? If you are a Christian with the assurance of salvation and redemption, how are you doing on this side of eternity? Are you walking as a mere person pursuing the things of self, along with the world, the flesh, and the devil? Or are you being transformed into a mirror image of Christ so He is manifested in and through you to the watching world? If you sense the need to change from “mere” to “mirror,” how is that going to happen? Is that what you want? Why or why not?

October 5, 2022 — They Recognized Him; How About Us?

“I was looking at Mark’s gospel last night,” Stan commented one morning, “and I saw something that raised a question in my mind.”

“What’s that?” I asked.

“A single verse in the third chapter about unclean spirits. It was about how they responded to Jesus, and it raised in my mind the question of my response.”

“Unclean spirits?” I said, “What do unclean spirits have to do with you?”

“Nothing, I hope,” Stan replied, “in the sense of having any. But what I was looking at is Mark’s statement that whenever unclean spirts beheld Jesus, they would fall down before Him and cry out, ‘You are the Son of God!’ And I was thinking about how and why it took me so long to behold Jesus, fall down before Him, and proclaim Who He is, the Son of God.”

“That seems like a question for just about everyone,” I commented, “at least for all of the people who have not yet come to faith.”

“I think you’re right about that,” Stan replied, “and I also think it could also apply to those who have come to faith.”

“How so?” I asked.

“I know for me ,” he replied, “that it took me a long time to behold Jesus as the Son of God. That’s the part about coming to faith. Then it took me a long time to fall down before Him. That’s the discipleship part where I put Him as Lord of my life.”

“Oh,” I said, “another example of the role discipleship in being a Christian. It seems like most everything to do with being a Christian has to do with discipleship.”

“It does seem like that, doesn’t it?” Stan replied. “Maybe because that’s the way it is, or at least the way it’s supposed to be!”

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Bible verses to consider:

And whenever the unclean spirits beheld Him, they would fall down before Him and cry out, saying, “You are the Son of God!” Mark 3:11.

Whoever will call upon the name of the Lord will be saved. How then shall they call upon Him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in Him whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without the preacher? And how shall they preach unless they are sent? Just as it is written, “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring glad tidings of good things!” Romans 10:13-15.

And He was saying to them all, “If anyone wishes to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me. For whoever wishes to save his life shall lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake, he is the one who will save it.” Luke 9:23-24.

Prayer: Thank you, Father, for giving your only begotten Son so that all who behold Him and believe in Him can have life with you eternally when it is time, along with the eternal life of knowing you and Jesus before then. Thank you for those who brought me to the truth so I could behold Jesus, fall down before Him, and acknowledge Him as your Son. I confess that too often I do not tell others of your free and gracious provision so they, too, can behold Jesus. Please forgive me — and please help me in following every step of your lead so I do all I can to help others behold Jesus and have the opportunity to fall down before Him in knowing Him as your Son and their Lord. Thank you that I can and do bring these prayers before you in His name. Amen.

Think on this: Do you have the assurance of salvation and redemption because you have beheld Jesus and have fallen down before Him with the acknowledgement that He is the Son of God? If no, why? What is in the way of such beholding, falling down, and acknowledging? If you are a Christian, how are you doing in acknowledging Him as your Lord? How about in telling others about Jesus so they, too, can have the same opportunity to behold Him? If you sense the need for any change in your life in these regards, how is that change going to happen? Is that what you want? Why or why not?

A Reminder

Waiting for the Train devotions are written and posted to help you grow in your faith walk. As you read each new posting, think about others you know who might enjoy and benefit from what you are reading — and pass it along to them by forwarding the email with a note of encouragement.