Wednesday, July 31, 2019

Me, Myself and the ‘Other Guy 
   by Sandra Fischer

“Lord, what about him?” (John 21:21b NIV)

Ever find yourself concerned about what someone else has or is getting in life compared with you? You may be teetering on the sin of covetousness. Many of us are familiar with the “greener grass” temptation to view the “other side of the fence”, comparing our lives with others. 

Peter did it. In John chapter 21, Christ restores Peter three times by appointing him to care for the “sheep”, His followers. Jesus indicates the kind of death Peter would experience, ending with an emphatic, “Follow me!” Instead of focusing on Jesus’ command, Peter turns to look at John and asks, “Lord, what about him?” He’s concerned with what Jesus had in mind for the “other guy.” Jesus said, “If I want him to remain alive until I return, what is that to you? You must follow me” (John 21:22 NIV).

God has a plan and purpose for each of us—to focus on Him, to follow where He leads us and to not be distracted. When we begin to wonder about the “other guy” and what God has in mind for him or her, we need to heed the voice of Jesus saying, “What is that to you? You must follow me.” From Peter’s example we can see he did refocus and follow Jesus. He trusted his life and death to Christ, faithfully serving and glorifying Him. We can do no less. Our Shepherd calls each of us as individuals. “. . .he calls his own sheep by name and leads them out” (John 10:3b NIV.) Let’s focus on our own path, following Him.

“Father, help me keep my eyes on You and Your path for me.”

Sandra is a Faithwriters Platinum member, author of “Seasons in the Garden.” Contact

Monday, July 22, 2019

Great Expectations by Sandra Fischer

“You don’t know what you are asking,” Jesus said. (Mark 10:38) NIV

Has anyone ever asked something of you with preconceived expectations and hidden motives?

According to Mark’s gospel, James and John did exactly that when they told Jesus: “Teacher, we want you to do for us whatever we ask” (Mark 10:35b NIV) Such audacity might elicit a sharp rebuttal by almost anyone—except Jesus, who simply asked what they wanted. Their answer revealed hidden, selfish motives. They wanted Jesus to grant them positions of honor, to sit at His right and left in His glory

“You don’t know what you are asking,” Jesus said. (v.38) He explained that to follow His course would mean a way of suffering and death for them. He added, “to sit at my right or left is not for me to grant” (v.40) Perhaps their recent experience of being part of Jesus’ inner circle at the Transfiguration prompted them to presume upon Jesus.

I wonder if we presume upon God sometimes when we pray. Do we have great expectations for Him to “do for us whatever we ask”? And, like James and John, do we fail to reckon what granting our prayers might require of us?

We do know throughout scripture that we can ask anything in prayer, but we should not presume upon God with wrong motives. Interestingly, James writes, “you do not receive {answers to prayers}, because you ask with wrong motives” (James 4:3a NIV) And Paul exhorts us to “call on the LORD out of a pure heart” (2 Timothy 2:22 NIV)

Jesus taught us to pray to the Father for His will to be done. He will meet that expectation every time.

“Father, help us in our petitions to want Your will above all else.”

Sandra is a Faithwriters Platinum member, author of “Seasons in the Garden.” Contact