|In the Saturday morning Bible Study at the 2015 Susquehanna Annual Conference Rev. Arun Andrews reminded us that great things happen through faith and obedience, referencing the story found in Luke chapter 5.|
The Saturday morning Bible Study at Annual Conference was led by Rev. Arun Andrews, Trinity UMC, New Cumberland.
As Andrews began he repeated the theme of the conference, “Alive in Christ Together,” but added, “one day at a time.” So often in the Gospels we are told that Jesus would go off alone to pray. Jesus sought out God’s face before he met the multitudes of people who sought him out. We need to follow that example to be effective.
He read the story of Jesus reaching out to Simon Peter as he was fishing. They had fished all night and caught nothing. Jesus instructed them to put their nets out on the other side. And Simon, instead of pulling out his credentials to show his expertise as a fisherman, simply obeyed.
Andrews asked the question, “Did you ever wonder why Jesus went from teaching in the synagogues in Chapter 4 in Luke to being at the sea at the beginning of the next chapter?” That’s where he found Simon Peter fishing. Was it by chance or on purpose? Of course it was on purpose, and Andrews reminded us that the Author of Life continues to plan and wants to change our destiny. We need to listen as we pray and obey.
Andrews told a story about Mother Teresa, who was once asked if she prayed every day and what did she say in her prayers. Mother Teresa answered that she didn’t say anything, that she simply listened. The interviewer wanted to know what God said, and Mother Teresa answered that God listened, too.
We need to break away from past failures to fresh obedience. Simon Peter did that when he cast his net on the other side of the boat. He just believed and obeyed. The result was success. The nets were full to the point of nearly breaking. And Simon called his partners in the other boats to come and help and share in the bounty. Simon knew that Jesus wasn’t just a carpenter. He was a master worth following.
Andrews told the story of little Jeremy, who suffered from some handicapping conditions. He was assigned to a special class in school. One Holy Week, the teacher gave the students an empty plastic egg and instructed the students to go home and fill it with something that reminded them of new life. The next day the students excitedly returned with a variety of items contained in the eggs. The teacher had the students explain why they choose what they did to put in the egg. Things like little plastic butterflies were in the eggs. Jeremy’s was empty. He explained that it was just like the empty tomb. Jeremy understood his faith. He died three months later, and his classmates placed an empty plastic egg beside him at his funeral.
Great things happen through faith and obedience.
To view the video and full transcript of Rev. Andrew's presentation go to http://susumc.org/index.php/component/content/article/51-media/susumc-videos/1376-2015-ac-saturday-morning-bible-study-alive-in-christ-one-day-at-a-time