When we read through the various resurrection appearances of Jesus as we do every Easter week we discover that Jesus appears to His friends and disciples in many different ways. I cannot see any reason why this should not still be the case today! That is, I believe we are foolish to limit the ways in which we might think or expect Jesus to appear to us. I can easily imagine the disciples as they gather to share their experiences and marvel at the way Jesus has risen from the dead.
One of the things that is most effective at building up our faith is listening to how God is working in other peoples’ lives. Sharing our testimonies is a great way of encouraging one another to a deeper and more expectant faith. I find there is very little more encouraging when I am a bit down in my faith than hearing an excited exposition of God is working in someone else’s life. It is not a matter of worrying about comparing myself to others; I know that God has a plan for us all and it is a matter of trying to be faithful to what He wants to do in my life.
Jesus appears to His disciples to give them hope and to bolster their faith; He manifests His power in our own lives from time to time for exactly the same purposes. We can and should expect Him to show His hand once in a while if for no other reason than to support us in our walk with Him. This is His promise to us when He ascended into heaven – that He would not leave us orphans but would send us the Holy Spirit. Jesus is never far from us – any distance that grows is a result of our own neglect and sin. He will always hear and answer our prayers. However, the form of His answer may not always be what we want or expect. Let us open our hearts to Him anew this day and trust that He knows what He is doing with us in our lives.
When was the last time I recognized the hand of God in my life? What was my response to that experience?
Lord Jesus, you are always faithful to your promises to me. Help me to be more faithful in responding to your grace and appearances in my life.