Blogs written by Beau Crosetto for PurposeCity.

Signs From God

Signs from God

Today’s entry is slightly different. It’s actually audio from a talk I recently gave to 300 students at UCLA. Here is a bit about the talk, I hope you might give it a listen:

People often ask me if God gives signs to help us believe in Him. Some people are just unsure, while others have heard that God is against intervening in the process. However, if you dig into scripture, God consistently gives people signs to help them believe in who He is. He loves helping people who don’t know Him, or aren’t paying attention to him, by giving them signs that pique their curiosity.

I recently gave a talk on “Signs” that I’d love to share with you. Together, we take a look at the story of the Magi during the birth of Jesus. You see, the Magi were not followers of the Jewish law and not believers in the Jewish God. But God gives them a clear sign that was unique to them and would have made them perk up and say, “What is going on here?” It was so alarming to them that it actually caused them to travel to all the way to Bethlehem. What were these signs from God? You’ll have to listen to find out! Click below to start streaming the talk now:

 

Water Into Wine

Water Into Wine: Are You on Empty?

When was there a time you ran out of something you really needed? Was it money for rent? Perhaps gas while driving over a bridge? Maybe love for a spouse?

We have all run out of important things at the wrong time – right when we need them the most, they escape us.

It brings up feelings of shame, failure, despair and even frustration.

Turn to John chapter 2 and this must have been exactly how the bridegroom would have felt when the wedding ran out of wine. You see, weddings during the time of Jesus would have lasted many days and the obligation of the host was always to have plenty of wine on hand –  you simply couldn’t run out. It would be total embarrassment and would bring tons of shame onto the family.

But, you see,  this day they did run out. Mary, Jesus mother, caught the problem before the bridegroom found out and Jesus, through a masterful plan involving daring servants, turned 180 gallons of water into wine – restoring the party to even better fashion than it was previously. In fact, the wine was so good, the master of ceremony shouted,

“Everyone brings out the choice wine first and then the cheaper wine after the guests have had too much to drink; but you have saved the best till now.” – John 2:10

This was the first of Jesus miracles. But why was this a sign? What was 180 gallons of water into wine supposed to point to?

Hope for the Weary

Jesus showed us that He has come to restore a broken world that has run out of grace and forgiveness. Our world is like the party – you and me are desperately empty. Things have run out in our life and we need immediate help.

But Jesus has come to save us. Not with wine, but with His blood. You see, the 180 gallons of wine (way more than was needed for the party) symbolizes the blood of Christ shed on the cross to “fill” up our empty world. Jesus is foreshadowing for us in John 2 that He will go to the cross and fill up the world with enough grace and forgiveness for all of our sins (more than enough actually). Where we have run out, He will fill tremendously.

So, the question for us is – do we see our need? Are there areas of our life that have run out? Where do you need forgiveness? Where do you need more love in a relationship? Where do you need help to forgive? Turn to Jesus and ask him to restore your emptiness just like he did wine for the wedding party.

 

Faith: Sticking Your Neck Out For Jesus

Faith: Sticking Your Neck Out For Jesus

Think about a time when you really stuck your neck out on the line. Think about a time when you believed in something so much that you did all you could to recruit to the cause.

It could be that weekend trip that you are trying feverously to get your buddies to skip work for. It could be that beautiful girl or cute boy you want to go on a date with you. It could be a cause to save millions of lives and you just need people to donate money. When we really want something, we will stick our neck out and do what it takes.

But what does this look like in the Christian faith? What does, “stick your neck out” look like when it comes to Jesus?

Mark 2:1-11 is a perfect example. Jesus is preaching inside a packed house and four men come carrying a paralyzed guy. They want to get him to Jesus, but the crowd is full and there is no room. Are they deterred? No, they climb the roof, bust a hole in it, and lower the guy down. Jesus does something remarkable. The text says,

“When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralyzed man, “Son, your sins are forgiven.”

Jesus moves because of the friends. Not because of the paralyzed guy. Jesus forgives this man of his sins and ends up physically healing him. Why? Because the friends had faith – faith that causes extreme action.

So what about the people around you? There are people around you that are literally sick and in need of a touch from God. What is it that will cause you to act and carry them to Jesus for a touch? There are people around you that aren’t literally sick, but they are paralyzed spiritually. They are wounded by the church, and won’t go in. They want to make a move towards Jesus, but they are stuck – they don’t know how to take that first step.

So what is it going to take? How can you be like these four men? More importantly, what was it about these four men that caused them to move so radically, climb a roof and break in?

Burden + Belief = Boldness

 

These guys had the incredible burden that their friend was not ok. They didn’t just overlook him and say, “oh well, he will be fine” or “I hope one day he gets better”. No, they took the burden onto themselves and had the internal conviction that this was not alright – we need to carry him to Jesus.

But they also had an incredible belief in Jesus. There is no way they would have carried their friend to Jesus if they didn’t really believe he could heal. Even if they had an incredible burden and concern for their friend, they would not have burst through the crowd, climbed a roof, and broke in without the incredible belief that Jesus was the answer.

Friends, if we want to be people of faith, and action, then we need to be people with incredible burden for our friends and a deep belief in Jesus. One without out the other will still leave you action-less.

How are you cultivating both things in your life? How does your burden for hurting people need to grow? How does your belief in Jesus as a healer need to grow?