‘But they laughed at him.’ Matthew 9.24
Jesus had just seen a wonderful miracle take place, and shortly afterwards he entered a room ready to bring healing to a girl who had actually just died. As he started to take steps to change the atmosphere in the room, the people began to laugh in disbelief at his statement that the girl was not dead. We may not exactly laugh at the thought of Jesus doing great things for us, but certainly there can be a momentary jolt of disbelief that his promises might be for us.
We may not be able to help initial reactions, but what really counts is what we do with them. Paul spoke about us taking every thought captive to Christ (2 Corinthians 10.5) and it is our initial reactions that often cause us difficulty – what causes that moment of disbelief? Why are we doubtful about praying a certain prayer? Why are we fearful that God is not going to act on our behalf?
When the people laughed at him Jesus threw them outside. Perhaps we need to learn to do the same with our moments of doubt and disbelief. Recognise them, name them, put them to one side and replace them with the thoughts that Christ would have in that situation.
Are you praying for something particular, but deep down doubting that Jesus will respond? If so now is the time to recognise this and change your thinking.
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The Revd John Ryeland, Director of The Christian Healing Mission