We are one week out from having read the entire book of Matthew! Great job! We’ve considered the theme of Matthew, “The Kingdom of Heaven,” as we’ve read. This expression is used more than 30 times throughout the book. Have you noticed any particular theme in your Bible journaling this month?
Mine seems to be a tiredness. I get that. But I also notice a comfortable closeness. Hopefully God feels the same way. I have also been aware of little waves of grace washing over me. Moments where I just feel the urge to say, “I just really love Jesus y’all.” And I normally do say it because I’m typically in the car, driving someone somewhere and it’s good for our children to hear us love Jesus.
Scott Hahn and Curtis Mitch, in the Ignatius Catholic Study Bible: New Testament, when speaking of this “Kingdom of Heaven” theme state,
The Kingdom of heaven is ethical in the sense that it calls for a human response to Jesus. It summons hearers to repentance (4:17), followed by a lifetime of discipleship, in which seeking the surpassing righteousness of Christ (5:20) is the highest priority (6:33) The Kingdom is also ecclesial in that its saving power is made present in the world through the Church.
P –My vision is so limited Lord. I want to see as You do. Now, yes, that may mean I would like to know how it is all going to turn out as well too; forgive my lack of trust.
O –The further into Matthew I read, the more I feel the impending death of Jesus. Here in chapter 20 He begins with a story of the laborers and their just wage. He fortells His death and then the story of James and John’s mother asking our Lord for a special spot next to Him. Finally He heals two blind men, but first he asks, “What do you want me to do for you?” And they reply, Lord, let our eyes be opened.” It says Jesus touched them in pity (compassion, tenderness) and immediately they received their sight and followed Him. Ending things are being spoken of–payment at the end of the day, our places in heaven and following Jesus as He makes His way towards Jerusalem.
W —vs 34…And Jesus having compassion on them, touched their eyes. And immediately they saw and followed him.
E –I heard something recently that I cannot stop rolling around in my heart and mind. “Things don’t happen to you, they happen for you.” So I wonder, if these men had not been blind, would they have needed or wanted Jesus? I know the hardest times of my life, in hindsight, bore the most fruit. That is a scary place for me to think of. I of course appreciate the fruit, but cringe at the memory of that pain.
R –I want to see the events of my day, my life as being for me rather than to me. The scriptures state “All things work together for good for those who love God.” Lord open my eyes so I can see this.
Please leave your POWERful reflections in the comments