WHAT THEY SAW Andy Hollifield 10-5-18
Luke 7:22 Then Jesus answering said unto them, Go your way, and tell John what things ye have seen and heard; how that the blind see, the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, to the poor the gospel is preached.
What a testimony! Just tell the thing that we have seen and heard. I learned a long time ago that quoting scripture is good and needful when witnessing. I also learned that lost folk want to know what Jesus has done for you before you tell them what he will do for them. The things that we have experienced ourselves with the Lord are often the best way to tenderize a soul and get it prepared to receive the scripture. As I have looked back since I have gotten older, there are two things I have noticed. The first is that I am not exactly sure where my youth went so fast. One day I was a young preacher just starting out and the next I had been doing it for 32 years. The other thing I noticed is that I have been through a lot more times of trial than what I ever would have dreamed I could endure. I have also seen the bountiful blessings along the way so much that it makes me want to walk with the Lord until I leave out. He gave me a good start with a Christian family and several godly pastors along the way. I realize that although I am still relatively young at 53, I have likely lived over half of my life. With that in mind, I want to try my best by the grace of God to give him a good finish. Because of what I have heard and seen and been through and how I’ve been blessed, the least I can do is to do my best for him. I have thought a lot about this as I have gotten older and to say I appreciate my heritage would be an understatement. I have noticed over the years in scripture that there are a lot of folks that seen and heard things in their younger years that served them well as they grew older. I want to look at some of them and also at some that we can only guess at how what they seen and heard affected their lives.
One that I have always wondered about is the boy with the five loaves and two fish in Matthew 14. I don’t know how big those loaves were but I know they weren’t big enough to feed the number they fed. The bible don’t say what became of the 12 baskets of fragments that were taken up but I have wondered if Jesus had his disciples to carry them down to that boys house. Can you imagine what that must have been like for that young lad. I can see him come busting through the door breathless and say, “Sorry I’m late Momma, but you’ll never believe what happened on my way home” and then he begins his story. I have wondered if maybe he kept his little box or bag or whatever he was carrying that day, and set it on his mantle to remind him of what Jesus did with his bread and fish that day.
I have also wondered about the two boys in 2 Kings 4 that were about to be sold as bondmen to satisfy a debt. I have often wondered whatever became of that pot that the widowed mother poured the oil out of that day. I have wondered if she always kept it as a memento of what God had done for her when she couldn’t do anything to help herself. Mostly I have wondered if maybe the oldest son asked his mom for it before she died. I wonder if him and his brother maybe got a little tear in their eye as they began to tell the story when their grandkids would ask them why they kept that beat up old pot. I have wondered if they went on to become godly men, realizing how close they came to spending their lives as slaves.
On down in the same chapter is the story of the Shunamite woman’s son that died and was raised again by Elisha. I wonder if that boy was old enough to even remember what happened to him or if he just always heard people talking about it. He was old enough to walk out to the field where his father was working and he was old enough to talk but he was still small enough to be sat on his momma’s knees. I wonder if he always looked out at that chamber on the wall to see if Elisha had come by while they were asleep or gone. I wonder if he looked at the chair where he had died as a little boy while his momma held him on her lap. I kind of figure that he was made to walk the line and I am sure that he saw a godly example out of his mom and dad.
I think also about the children of Obededom in 2 Samuel 6. I wonder what it was like in their home for those three months the ark was there. I kind of suspect that during those three months the ark was in their home, they learned to fear, love, and reverence the Lord as never before. I have also thought about the brothers and sisters of Jesus. Can you imagine being the younger 1/2 sibling of the Messiah of Israel? What about Alexander and Rufus, the sons of Simon of Cyrene? Paul mentioned Rufus in Romans 16. There is a man named Alexander that defended Paul in Acts 19, whether it is the same one or not I am not sure. I imagine though, that when Christ was spoken about in their home that it brought back to their dad all of the emotions he had that day as he walked up Calvary with his Savior. I bet things were never the same in their home after the crucifixion day. There are others but the last one I want to mention is Timothy. In 2 Timothy chapter 1 Paul speaks about the “unfeigned faith that is in thee, which dwelt first in thy grandmother Lois, and thy mother Eunice; and I am persuaded that in thee also.” He was speaking of Timothy’s upbringing in his godly house. With Paul being that well acquainted with Timothy’s family, I am confident that he also had a godly home to grow up in.
Now for the big question; What do our kids see? What items do they see treasured in our homes because they are a memento to the Lord? What kind of life do they see momma and daddy live each day in the home? I know some kids that, based on how they conduct themselves in the house of God and elsewhere, and their manners, they are obviously growing up in the fear and admonition of the Lord. I guess it can be summed up like this: Do our kids see “What they saw?” Have a blessed day in the Lord!!!