Rich in Good WorksHow can you encourage other believers in Jesus to “be rich in good works”?
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Disappointment and Hope
They stopped short, sadness written across their faces (v.17).
A 5-year-old boy was told that his family was going to the Grand Canyon. He could hardly wait. When the day finally arrived, the boy was visibly disappointed. He said, “I thought you said that it was a big cannon.” When you’re hoping for the Grand Cannon, you’ll be let down, even by something as spectacular as the Grand Canyon!
Something similar happened with the two disciples on the road to Emmaus. They were disappointed with Jesus. For they had hoped that “He was the Messiah who had come to rescue Israel” (Luke 24:21). But He was crucified, and now His body was gone!
If you’ve ever prayed and hoped for something—a job, a baby, or a ministry opportunity—that you felt was God’s will, but then it didn’t come to be, you can identify with the disciples’ disappointment. But Jesus said to them, “You foolish people! You find it so hard to believe all that the prophets wrote in the Scriptures. Wasn’t it clearly predicted that the Messiah would have to suffer all these things before entering His glory?” (vv.25-26). The disciples knew that Jesus would redeem Israel, but they had overlooked the prophecies about the Messiah having to suffer. They foolishly focused on part of His Word, but not the whole. The same can be true of us.
Thankfully, God is patient. Jesus walked and talked with the two disillusioned disciples along that long dusty road. He asked them questions to draw out the source of their spiritual disappointment. Then He taught them.
We can trust that our unchanging God will deal similarly with us. One songwriter expresses it this way: “Carefully touching me, causing my eyes to see. Jesus makes beautiful things of my life.”
—Poh Fang Chia
Here are some challenging words from God’s Word: Luke 21:17; John 16:33; 2 Timothy 3:12. What similar passages can you think of?
What are the main sources of your spiritual disappointments? How can prayer, God’s Word, and talking with other believers help you to overcome them?
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