At that time Jesus, full of joy through the Holy Spirit, said, “I praise you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and learned, and revealed them to little children. Yes, Father, for this is what you were pleased to do.” - Luke 10:21
If Jesus were a pro sports player he would have been called for “Excessive Celebration” in this passage from Luke (see Luke 10:17-24). What was the cause of Jesus’ Extremely Joyful Prayer? In short, his followers finally got it. They’d been sent out, to pray for the sick and share what God was doing, then something unexpected happened. When they spoke in Jesus’ name, evil spirits ran away. Even though we may not, the disciples encountered evil spirits regularly. What was new to them was seeing demons flee. Sure, there were exorcists in those days who used incantations and rotten smelling roots, but they were not very effective. The authority and power of Jesus, however, put the enemy on the run every time.
Jesus was not excited that the demons fled, he was excited because God revealed to the disciples what happens behind the scenes when we follow Christ and pursue His mission. You see, Jesus was leading his disciples to Jerusalem where he would be arrested, beaten and killed. It would look like Jesus had given up and failed. But what was really happening (behind the scenes) is that Satan was being vanquished and death conquered.
The path of discipleship, of listening to and obeying Jesus, often looks and feels like losing. We may think we are not making a difference. But if we are striving to be disciples, if we are seeking Jesus, serving him, praying for the sick, sharing our God stories with others, if we are on mission then we can know the enemy is being overcome and we are winning. Paul put it this way, That is why we never give up. Though our bodies are dying, our spirits are being renewed every day. ( 2 Corinthians 4:16).
If that makes you want to celebrate, then what’s stopping you from shouting out to God with an Excessively Joyful Prayer right now?
Keep Pressing On,
- Pastor Tim
I can plod. I can persevere in any definite pursuit. To this I owe everything.
- William Carey
My name is Tim Kirkes. I am honored to be the a child of my heavenly Father, the husband of Lisa, the father of two boys and the pastor of San Dimas Wesleyan church.