Lessons from the Gospels

The Understanding Standstill

mustknowOur need for understanding can get in the way of our faith. And it’s not just when we’re far away from understanding. We can also be very familiar with something…familiar enough to not see our need for continued understanding.

Consider what happened with Jesus returned to Nazareth.

He went to his hometown and taught the people in the synagogue, and they were amazed. They said, “Where did this man get this wisdom and this power to do miracles? He is just the son of a carpenter. His mother is Mary, and his brothers are James, Joseph, Simon, and Judas. And all his sisters are here with us. Where then does this man get all these things?” So the people were upset with Jesus.

But Jesus said to them, “A prophet is honored everywhere except in his hometown and in his own home.”

So he did not do many miracles there because they had no faith. (Matthew 13:54-58)

The people Jesus had grown up with seemed to know him the least. They’re not the only ones who can be guilty of this. We get used to who someone is…at least who they appeared to be at a certain point in time…and we make assumptions about them, both good and bad, into the future even when they’ve changed, both positively and negatively. We don’t expect them to have grown beyond where and when we got to know them, or we refuse to see the ways in which they have failed to develop and grow.

Who do you say Jesus is?

Are you going on your assumptions but refuse to know him personally?

Are you standing firmly on what you’ve been taught but refuse to sift through the details as he reveals himself to you in more clarifying ways?

Jesus doesn’t change, but your faith should always be growing. He wants more for you, and he can provide the “more” he has in mind. Replace your trust in what you think you know with the reality of who Jesus is. Know him.

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