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I must admit, I sometimes fall into the same trap Jesus’ friends and family fell into. When I hear that someone from my small Manitoba town has “made it big” somewhere in the world, it’s easy for me to discount the accomplishment. Why do we seem to think the amazing people all come from somewhere else?
In a very real sense, Jesus did come from somewhere else. Yet, they’d seen him playing as a toddler, roughhousing with his brothers, and working alongside Joseph, his carpenter father.
Often I hear how God is moving in miraculous ways in the jungles of Africa, or in regions of the world that are hostile to Christianity, and I am amazed. Yet I sometimes doubt whether Jesus would ever do a miracle for me. And when he does, I’m so ready to give the credit to medication, or misdiagnosis, or coincidence. Even worse, how often have we as a Canadian Christian church lacked faith in Jesus’ power? To what extent is he not working the same miracles here as he does elsewhere because we simply don’t have the faith that he can or will?
This passage reminds us, and warns us, to remember that Jesus is God incarnate. Although he is fully man he is also “not from around here” and is fully God. Yes, we believe in his humanity and approachability – but we must also take care to guard our faith in his divinity and expect him to reveal himself as such. We must love him as a friend, revere him as God, and expect him to act in our midst according to his character.
Jesus was surprised that those who knew him best didn’t have any faith. Let us not have that said of us.
Dear Jesus, Thank you for being both fully God and fully man. Please show me how to revere you as God even while I know you as friend, so my faith in you may grow and not diminish. In the powerful and holy name of Jesus I ask this. Amen.