In the story of Christmas, the angel Gabriel came to Mary and told her she would be having a child by a miracle of the Holy Spirit and this child would be Jesus, the son of God. Mary believed that if people would just stick with what God told them, His Word was always going to come to pass. “For with God nothing shall be impossible” (Luke 1:37). She had heard of the miraculous things God did and totally believed that God’s Word was true. She believed that the Red Sea really did open up miraculously to let the Israelites cross over on dry land. She believed the story about the ax head that was lost, but then floated up out of the water, defying the natural laws of gravity (2 Kings 6:5-6). She believed what she heard about the Hebrews just looking at the brass serpent in the wilderness and getting healed of their snake bites (Num. 21:8-9).
So when the angel Gabriel told her that she was the one who would miraculously birth the Messiah, the son of God, the promised seed from the Bible, she believed it: “And Mary said, Behold the handmaid of the Lord; be it unto me according to thy word” (Luke 1:38).
Peter also was taught to believe the records of the many miracles God did. And he, like Mary, believed beyond what looked impossible by natural laws. Peter literally stepped out of the boat, after hearing and believing just one word from Jesus: “Come” (Matt. 14: 29). Peter saw that Jesus was walking on top of the water, even as the ship was being tossed around by the waves. When Jesus said, “Come,” Peter figured Jesus meant it, so he dared to do it.
We all have verses that mean a lot to our heart. We can probably name a few right now. Those are the very ones the Lord has been trying to speak to us personally all along. If you’ve not done this before, you can take a slightly new approach to those favorite verses. Focus on the verse then be like Mary: Believe the miraculous and say, “Be it unto me according to thy Word.” And let’s be like Peter, walk out and expect it to work.
(painting by Henry Ossawa Tanner 1898)
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