Writer: Doris Ruiter
Writer’s Ministry: Prayer Shawl Team, Receptionist Volunteer, Healing Prayer Team member, Coleman UMC Organist
Text: 1 Peter 1:6-9
PRAISE TO GOD FOR A LIVING HOPE
Nowhere in the Bible are we commanded to “Speak Jesus”. Our Jesus was born, witnessed, and died to save us from our sins. We are given a brand-new life to live with a future in Heaven. While we are here on earth we are commanded to go joyfully and make disciples of all nations.
I recently visited the Ark Encounter in Williamstown, Kentucky. This was not a destination on “my bucket” list, but it was a stop on a bus tour that I took. I had seen TV commercials about the Ark Encounter, but I imagined it was just another tourist attraction. What I saw at the Ark Encounter has truly impacted me.
The Ark Encounter is an actual size replication of Noah’s Ark as described in the Bible. The interior design of the Ark is probably the imagination of the builders. The family living quarters and the areas that were built to keep the animals and the workshops that were needed are huge. The storage areas for food and water are also immense.
The size of the Ark alone is so awe-inspiring that it takes your breath away. How did Noah ever build an incredible structure of this size with the tools he had at that time? Did the people in his day think he had lost his mind? How were all the animals gathered together and walked orderly by twos through that huge door? And yes, there is a huge door in the Ark.
Noah had faith and trust that should be an inspiration to us all. He listened to God and followed God’s instructions to build this huge boat in the middle of nowhere. Noah truly trusted God.
Today’s Ark is also built in a field in the middle of nowhere. Reading about the faith that the builders had in building this boat is also a witness to their faith in God. They are SPEAKING JESUS.
While inside the Ark I saw people who appeared to be just as amazed as I was over the immense size and the beauty of the inside structures. Overall, it was very quiet and reverent inside. I suppose not the way it was in Noah’s day with all the animals making their noises.
At the last minute, I had placed a bag of cross pennies in my luggage not knowing what I was going to do with them. A cross penny is literally a penny with a cross cut out of it. It represents that Jesus died on the cross to save us from our sins so we can be given a new life. While touring the Ark I gave away 100 cross pennies. Not one person in the Ark Encounter refused my gift. What a God we have! I was SPEAKING JESUS.
This advent season we are again honoring and celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ. Let this time be a new beginning for you to joyfully witness and SPEAK JESUS to our community.
- How do you show your faith and witness to others? Do you joyfully Speak Jesus?
- How do you give praise to God for your living HOPE?
Prayer: Our Heavenly Father, give us the tools to witness in your name and give us the joyful countenance to not be afraid to Speak Jesus. Amen
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