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Weekly Devotions

St. Andrew's is focused on providing opportunities for all to experience the love and grace of Jesus. We offer a variety of ministries that allow everyone to grow closer to God.

Each Wednesday, a devotion is posted here, sent via email to our email list and also posted on our Facebook page. If you would like to be part of our email list please contact the church office. In addition, check out past Devotions on our Facebook page. 

Wednesday, August 10, 2022: The Disciples Part 2

The Disciples: Part 2

Let us consider the disciples John, Philip and Nathanael (Bartholomew). What can we learn from them?

What is it like to be part of the inner circle? The group that seems to always know what is going on and seems to be included in the special conversations? That is a great way to think of John the Disciple. One who was included in the most private of experiences like the Transfiguration. If you were him, would you be grateful or want to secure being known as the greatest person next to Jesus? John decided to argue with the other disciples that he was the greatest and even asked Jesus for that distinction. Humility wasn’t always a part of John the Disciple. Where in your life are you not humble and like John wanting that prestige and flaunting what you have with others?

Philip is one who exhibits enthusiasm to follow Jesus but also lives in doubt of what Jesus can do. Philip is quick to not only follow but also quick to tell others to follow with a confidence that Jesus is God. Do you have that kind of faith that you will tell anyone that Jesus is God? Or do you shy away from those conversations? But then Philip clearly shows his doubt when he tells Jesus there isn’t enough money to feed 5000. His incredulousness was authentic. How often are you like Philip where you doubt God’s abundance in this world? Where do you question Jesus’ ability to create miracles and blessings?

Nathanael in the Gospel of John and most likely Bartholomew in the Synoptic Gospels, little is known of him. He was a devout Jew who first questioned who Jesus was but then affirmed Jesus was God. A convert. Maybe the first. Where in your faith journey have you been like Nathanael where you question Jesus and God’s ability but then praise it as if there was no questioning at all? Where in your life do you wonder what God is up to and later praise God for what occurred?

These three disciples help us to see the challenges of living out what it means to follow Jesus. All three questioned Jesus in some way. When do you question Jesus? In your illness, recovery, relationships, finances, worries? But yet all three affirmed that Jesus was God. When do you affirm that Jesus is God? Perhaps all three of these disciples remind us that our spiritual faith walks with God is an intertwined series of doubts and affirmations. What will it take to stop the doubt and only affirm that Jesus is God?

Oh, Gracious God thank you for letting me question you and affirm you. Thank you for helping me to see that in the answers to my questions your blessings and beauty abound. Amen.

 

by Rev. David Piltz

Sources: All the People in the Bible, Encyclopedia of Bible Characters, Who’s Who in the Bible, Harpercollins Bible Dictionary.