4th August 2019

You Had to be There

“And with many such parables He spoke the word to them as they were able to hear it. But without a parable He did not speak to them. And when they were alone, He explained all things to His disciples.”
Mark 4:33-34 (NKJV UK)

Have you ever experienced something so amazing or seen something so beautiful you struggled to put it into words? After visiting one of our youth camps in Montana, my wife and I took a scenic drive through the heart of Glacier National Park. It was stunning. I’ll never forget one moment as we stood overlooking a valley surrounded by majestic mountains. The grandeur was overwhelming. I turned to my wife and saw that she had tears rolling down her cheeks. We both agreed that the views were more than our eyes could take in. I’ve shown hundreds of pictures and described the experience countless times. But my photos and descriptions don’t move anyone to tears. I finally have to say, “Well, I guess you had to be there.” Have you ever used that expression? No matter how well you articulate yourself, mere words will never enable someone to enter your experience or see what you saw. All you can say is, “You had to be there.”

It reminds me when Jesus tells his disciples in John 16:12, “I still have many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now.” In other words, I could try to tell you, but you wouldn’t get it anyway. The disciples were not in a place to receive all that Jesus had to share with them. So, Jesus tells them “when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth; for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak; and he will tell you things to come. He will glorify Me, for He will take os what is Mine and declare it to you. All things that the Father has are Mine. Therefore I said that He will take of Mine and declare it to you” (John 16:13-15).

Did you notice how the Father, Son and Spirit are all involved in what Jesus wants to share with his disciples? The truth the Spirit leads us into is the eternal truth of who God is as the Triune God of love. This is not a truth mere words can convey. But Jesus doesn’t shrug his shoulders and say, ‘You had to be there,’ He sends his Spirit who leads us there. Though in many ways our future with God is surrounded by mystery, God as Father, Son and Spirit is not a cold mathematical, 3-in-1 conundrum beyond knowing. God is an extravagant relationship of love who is known in face-to-face communion.

Instead of missing out on this immeasurable experience on account of ‘not being there,’ the Father sends His Son who sends His Spirit to bring us into their very life of eternal and boundless fellowship. Just like I wish you were there with us to see and experience the majestic Glacier National Park, I desire that you, my friends, see and experience the stunning and overwhelming love of God with us.

Gracious Father, we are so limited in what we understand, see, hear. But you have given us your Holy Spirit to help us, and we thank you for that very much. In Jesus’ name we pray.

Presented by Anthony Mullins

About the Presenter:
The Day by Day each Sunday is taken from ‘Speaking of Life,’ (https://www.gci.org/videos/media-speaking-of-life/), a public resource video on the USA website of Grace Communion International. Anthony Mullins is a GCI Elder and pastors the Hickory, North Carolina congregation. He is also the National Coordinator of the Intern, Pastoral Resident and Coaching Programmes for Grace Communion International. Anthony and his wife, Elizabeth live in Hickory, North Carolina.

Local Congregation:
You are welcome to attend one of our local Church congregations located throughout the UK and Ireland. For details of your nearest local congregation, check on our website, www.gracecom.church under the ‘Churches’ tab, or ring +44 (0)1858 437099.

Email: admin@daybyday.org.uk

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