Week 5: Worship, featuring a poem from Mark

In our second post today, we’re worshiping our Faithful Savior.

As the time drew near for him to ascend to heaven, Jesus resolutely set out for Jerusalem. (Luke 9:51 NLT)
When it came close to the time for his Ascension, he gathered up his courage and steeled himself for the journey to Jerusalem. (Luke 9:51 Message)
And it came to pass, when the time was come that he should be received up, he steadfastly set his face to go to Jerusalem. (Luke 9:51 KJV)

God was faithful to keep his promise to send the Messiah. That’s what faithfulness is—keeping promises and proving oneself to be trustworthy. In Luke, we see Jesus being faithful to his purpose to give himself as the perfect sacrifice to save us.

I will give thanks to you, O Lord, among the peoples;
I will sing praises to you among the nations.
For your steadfast love is great to the heavens,
your faithfulness to the clouds. (Psalm 57:9-10)
He has helped his servant Israel, in remembrance of his mercy,
as he spoke to our fathers,
to Abraham and to his offspring forever. (Luke 1:54-55)
The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases;
his mercies never come to an end;
they are new every morning;
great is your faithfulness. (Lamentations 3:22-23)
For the word of the Lord is upright,
and all his work is done in faithfulness.
(Psalm 33:4)
As for you, O Lord, you will not restrain your mercy from me;
your steadfast love and your faithfulness will ever preserve me! (Psalm 40:11)
Now may the God of peace make you holy in every way,
and may your whole spirit and soul and body be kept blameless
until our Lord Jesus Christ comes again.
God will make this happen, for he who calls you is faithful.
(I Thessalonians 5:23-24 NLT)
Into your hand I commit my spirit;
you have redeemed me, O Lord, faithful God. (Psalm 31:5)

How have you seen God’s faithfulness in the book of Luke thus far?

On Purpose

I find, as a teacher, that it is not
too uncommon to hear combinations
of words, in one’s wildest imagination,
one would never have expected to hear
coming from the mouth of a student, or
incomprehensibly, even from one’s own.
“You really don’t want to lick your shoe.”
“Instruments should remain outside of the trousers whenever possible…”
“Teacher, she kissed me on purpose!”

I find, as a teacher, that my classes
often resemble the motley crew of
disciples, selected by name, in love
by the Teacher, called out from the masses
who thronged around Him for what He could give –
free show, free food – blind to His true purpose.
The one with no filter between brain and mouth…
The brothers who really should’ve been split between classes…
The light-fingered one with the angelic face of feigned blamelessness…
That one…(“Oh, you have him? You poor thing! Let me tell you…”)

I find, as a teacher, that the secret
is to teach the class that’s in front of you,
not the ideal class of your fondest dreams,
who only exist in “what might have been.”
To meet them where they are, to meet the needs
they don’t know they have in the best way you can.
Not distracted by the importunities of gnat-sized attention spans.
Recognizing the wiggling and wavering of immature understanding.
Remaining resolute, faithful to the purpose of the plan.
I find, in the Teacher, a stronger sense
of purpose, of patience, faithfulness
despite my lack of faith and constant distraction.
Does He, like me, feel exasperated?
when I, like the disciples, bring disruption,
attempting to redefine His purpose?
Do we endeavor to emulate His faithfulness?
Do we, like He did, embrace our purpose with relentless tenacity?
Do we set our faces resolutely to His vision, His plan?
Can anyone say, “Teacher, they loved me on purpose”?

–Mark J. Leamy, 2018

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