Jesus' miracles: Failure begins with "we"

Focus passage: Mark 9:14-29

Joe began the men’s club meeting with a sigh. Only three people had shown up again. What was the use of even trying to hold the meeting? There weren’t enough people to get anything done. He remembered just a few years ago when the group numbered twenty each month. Now look at it. Some had suggested that the whole group disband, but Joe enjoyed the fellowship with the few who still came. This was a good group of men. There just weren’t many of them. What should they do to make it better? Why can’t we succeed like we did before? It was in such chaos that Jesus miraculously triumphed.

·         Disciples are overwhelmed v. 14. Not that long ago, the disciples had cast out demons easily. Now they were overwhelmed with the father screaming at them to do something, the son out of control and the teachers of the law-mocking their failed attempts. It was chaos as their ministry failed and they wondered what to do next.

·         Child’s father is lost in doubt v.22. The father has his own demons inside to deal with. Disappointed and defeated, he is angry at the disciples and at God. Can anyone please help my son? He pleads with Jesus but is unsure that Jesus can do anything against such a powerful demon. He longs for help, but doubts that help is coming for his son’s condition. His mind is in conflict as he wonders what to do next.

·         Jesus flexes His muscles v. 25. Jesus takes control before things get out of hand. Withdrawing from the crowd, Jesus issues a simple command forcing the demon out of the boy. It is hardly a fair fight. The Lord of the Universe speaks and everyone must obey. Jesus does not argue with their frustrations or fears. He demonstrates why they should have relied on Him.

There are times many of us feel like our lives are shattered and lying on the floor. The “demons” in your life are getting the best of you. Our first question is often “What are we going to do?” Sadly, that is the wrong question. The turning point for the father was when he believed in the power and promise of Jesus.

Frustrated with the low attendance, Joe began to cry and then he began to pray. He prayed for the men’s group. He prayed that the group would be blessed by the Holy Spirit so that they touched the hearts of people who were missing and their friends who were going through difficult times. God began to do miracles and the group slowly grew. It was all a matter of what “God” could do and not what “we” can do.