It is important t0 point out a few recurring themes in Mark’s gospel up to this point in the story:

Mark is constantly locating Jesus by a lake, in a boat, or on a lake. It seems that the lake is one of the safe places for Jesus to get away from the crowds of people. A place of silence and solitude.

The crowd is ever growing and continuously pressing against Jesus. I think noticing how he handles this is important to any leader or follower of Christ.

There is an increasing tension between Jesus and the religious leaders of the day.

Jesus is constantly telling the people who get healed to keep the event on the down low…none of them do.

The heart is a significant metaphor being used by Jesus to explain the kingdom of God and what a worshiper of God really look like.

Allow these observations to help you as you continue reading through the gospel of Mark.

I wanted to land on something I found interesting in Mark 6. Mark tells us that Jesus isn’t being accepted in his hometown. People are treating him without honor. Mark also tells us that Jesus was “unable to do miracles among them” because of their “unbelief.” (Mark 6:5-6) Jesus even says, “he was amazed at their unbelief.”

Jesus does go ahead and heal a few sick people, but no miracles were done. I guess healing sick people is more like an everyday thing for Jesus. Apparently, miracles were different and required faith. I know this is getting sticky for some.

Someone might ask, “Daniel, are you saying ‘people don’t receive miracles because they lack faith?’” I am not really saying anything at this point. I am simply making an observation from the text. Actually, Jesus is saying that miracles didn’t happen in Nazareth because of their unbelief.

SOOO…what do we do with do that?

I absolutely think that there is an argument to be made that there are times when miracles don’t happen because of lack of faith. This isn’t the first time this happens in the Bible. It even happened to the Disciples when they tried to cast out a demon from a little boy and Jesus tells them they were unable to do it because they lacked faith. Do we then extrapolate that every miracle that doesn’t happen is somehow our fault?

Lord, I hope not. If miracles only depended on you and me, the world would be in BIG trouble.

However, I do think there is something to be said for the relationship between miracles happening and faith. We are told to have faith in our God, who is able to do miracles. He tells us to pray for healing and for our world. If there was no point, then why would he tell us to do it? There is a point to putting our faith in a God who can do miracles.

I believe that miracles happen when followers of Jesus pray in-line with God’s heart and God determines that the situation being prayed about is going to draw people to worship Him.

A little explanation is necessary. Miracles are intended by God to bring Him glory and worship. They are designed to draw people to the overwhelming power of God and cause them to repent, to worship, and surrender, to pray, to focus themselves again on their all-powerful, healing, and loving God.

BELIEVING FOR A MIRACLE

1). BELIEVE

We are called to believe and put our faith in a God, who can and does do miracles. I feel as if too often we doubt God can do anything. I know we say all the right things and pray all the right prayers, but do we really believe that God can do something about the impossible situation we are facing. Do YOU really believe? REALLY?

2). TRUST   

You aren’t God. I know this comes as a shock to many of us, but it is true. All we can do is pray. We can’t determine the outcome. God is still in control and still on the throne. He invites us into the story, but ultimately he is the one who decided. (I realize this gets into did God do this to me, or why didn’t God answer by prayers–all are great questions; however, I can’t deal with them here. Perhaps you can check out my message series called “Life’s Toughest Questions” for some insight into these difficult questions). We must trust Him even when we don’t understand Him. We must trust that he knows best, even though that is extremely hard to do. Trust is essential to faith and vice versa.

Lastly, never apologize for asking God for a miracle. He is gracious and loving and hears our prayers. Where do you need a miracle today? Pray and believe in faith for this to happen. I’ll believe with you.

Prayer:

Lord Jesus, I need a miracle today! I need You to show up in this situation. I need You to show up in this relationship. I need You to show up at my job. I need You to show up [insert need]. I put my faith and trust in You. I submit my desires to You, so that they are in-line with Your desires. I relax and trust in You. When I doubt, Lord, draw me close to see Your heart for me. Help me to see it how You see it. Give me faith. I believe for a miracle today! In Christ strong name. Amen!

-Pastor Daniel