Martha, Mary, and Lazarus

I love telling you the stories of the Bible, especially the stories of the life of Jesus as told in the gospels. Sometimes we know the names of people in the stories, sometimes we don’t.

There were a number of women who came to Jesus during his ministry.  There was the woman who touched the hem of his cloak and was healed.  There was the young girl, Jairus’s daughter, who was made well.  There was the widow who was leading the funeral procession for her son who Jesus raised to life. We never know the names of these women, just that they were women who Jesus ministered to in different ways.

Then there were two sisters named Mary and Martha.  They had a brother named Lazarus.  We hear about them in several different places in the gospels.  This family was obviously very special to Jesus.  He went numerous times to their home to eat and enjoy a meal with his disciples. He cared for them and they cared for him.

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I found a resource that shows pictures of 1st century life that I thought might interest you: First Century Life in Israel

I look forward to telling you more about these sisters and their brother.  Be sure to bring your brother or sister when you come!

With love,

Mrs. Bess

 

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The Leper Made Well

This week Jesus encounters a colony of lepers, suffering from skin diseases that keep them separated from regular society.  But Jesus loves and cares for them and heals them when they cry out to him.  He sends them to the priests who are the ones who declare such people clean.  Once they go through the inspections by the priests and the required waiting period, then they can go back home to live with their family and friends.  What a wonderful thing Jesus did for them.

Jesus Heals Ten Lepers

When Jesus meets this group, there are 10 lepers that are healed.  As soon as he tells them to go to the priest they all rush on their way knowing that they are now clean.  But one of them thinks to turn back and say thank you.

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He falls at Jesus’ feet because he knows that he owes his life to Jesus.  Jesus recognizes this act of faith and tells the man, “Rise and go your way; your faith has made you well.”

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We don’t know what happens with the others in the group of ten.  But we do know that this man lived a different life now.  Not only was he made clean from leprosy, but he was made right with God.

What a blessing!  I pray that you know the same blessing too!

With love,

Mrs. Bess

Blind Man Stood By the Road

We see Jesus working another miracle this week.  He is on his way to Jerusalem and goes through Jericho.  As he is walking along, surrounded by a great crowd of people, a voice from the side of the road is heard crying out to him, “Jesus, son of David, have mercy on me!” It is a blind man named Bartimaeus who is calling out.

It is interesting that Bartimaeus cries out to Jesus saying, “Son of David”.  We know David was the great king of Israel and Jesus was directly descended from him.  But why would the blind man use this title?  Why not, “Kind Teacher” or “Worker of Miracles”?  Son of David is a Messianic title belonging to the one who was anointed by God and the one who could save.

Not only did Bartimaeus want to see, but he wanted to be saved. And that is what happens on this day when Jesus passes his way.

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I’ve always loved puppets and I found a great puppet show version of the story of the blind man whose sight was restored by Jesus.

Blind Bart Puppet Show

Come Sunday and we’ll talk about this story some more.  I pray you have eyes to see that only Jesus saves.

He loves you and so do I!

Mrs. Bess

Feeding the Multitudes

Do you remember the lesson from this Summer when we looked at the I AM names of Jesus when Jesus called himself, “The Bread of Life”? Jesus was speaking to a great crowd of people who had come to him while he was teaching along the Sea of Galilee.  They had come to find him because they had heard he had healing powers.  He was like no other teacher that people had ever heard or seen.

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The miracle he worked this day was like nothing they had ever experienced either.  He fed them (more than 5000 people!) with 2 fishes and 5 loaves of bread. And there were 12 basketfuls leftover. In spite of the acclaim Jesus had among the people, he wanted to make sure that they understood what he had to offer them was not merely food to fill their bellies.  He was offering nourishment for their souls which were starved because of sin and a lack of faith and trust in God.

I pray that you come and receive the same nourishment for your heart and soul as we study the lesson about Jesus Feeding the 5000 on Sunday. In the  meantime, can you find the words in the word search below? Give it a try and I can’t wait to see you Sunday!

Love, Mrs. Bess

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Only Jesus can calm this storm!

We are starting out 2018 looking back at some of the stories of Jesus during the time he was preaching and working miracles.  Jesus loved people and wanted to know them personally.  He cared about them and the things that troubled them.  When they had questions to ask, he took time to answer their questions.  When they were sick or hurting he wanted to make them well.  Most of all he wanted to open their eyes to their need for God.

This week we are going to look back at a time Jesus was with his disciples.  They were in a boat on the Sea of Galilee and found themselves in trouble when a storm suddenly came up.  The disciples were frightened and didn’t know what to do.  And Jesus was asleep. Didn’t he care?  How could he possibly be sleeping when their lives were in danger?

“Be Still and Know”

Come on Sunday and we’ll talk about this story together.  Come learn about how on Jesus has the power over creation and the power to calm the storms that rage about us.

 

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With love-

Mrs. Bess

Happy New Year 2018!

I love to celebrate the beginning of another year with sparklers and party favors, playing games and spending time with friends.  I hope you had a good time too!

As we start the new year we will look back at the Parables we studied in the Fall of 2017.  We will look back at the pictures and “hidden” meaning of the stories that were told by Jesus to illustrate something about the Kingdom of Heaven.

There were pictures about gardening and farming

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(the Parable of the Soils, Parable of the Vineyard Workers)

there were pictures of pearls and lost coins.

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(Parable of the Pearl of Great Value, Parable of the Lost Coin)

There were parables that pictured weddings

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(Parable of the Wedding Feast)

and parables that pictured celebrations of other kinds.

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(Parable of the Lost Son)

When you come this week, we’ll review theses parables and more.  And look forward to remembering how our salvation is pictured in these stories.  Jesus taught them, but God, through the Holy Spirit, gives us eyes and hearts to see and understand what it means to love and trust Him as we should!

I look forward to seeing you then!

With love-

Mrs. Bess

Jesus is Coming!

At St. Andrews we celebrate Advent.  Do you know what “advent” means? It means “the arrival of a notable person, thing, or event”. That the notable event is Christmas—an event that many people around the world celebrate in a variety of ways.  Many of those celebrations include special traditions; middle of the night gifts that are placed under trees; festive music and food and other treats.

But many don’t know about the notable person, Jesus.  Why is his arrival so notable?

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Jesus is the name the angel Gabriel called the baby who was to be born to Mary and Joseph. It means “one who saves”.  I would say that is quite notable!  God alone saves.  Jesus is also called “Immanuel” meaning God with us.  God, made flesh, come down to earth to save us.

Let’s remember that during Advent.  We celebrate the arrival of the one who came to save!  Hallelujah! Amen!

Love,

Mrs. Bess