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They Could Not

Priscilla | Aug 01, 2017


 Then the disciples came to Jesus privately and said, “Why could we not cast it out?”
Matthew 17:19

 A devastated father fell to his knees before the Messiah. He explained in desperation that his beloved son was terribly sick – suffering from seizures and bouts of epileptic craziness. His heart broke for his child. He wanted, more than all else, to see him in good health.

The fact that he is positioned before Jesus when his narrative begins in Matthew 17 leads us to believe that he has started his quest for healing here, in this moment, before the Healer. But Matthew quickly clears up the misconception by chronicling what this tearful father said to Jesus:

“I brought him to your disciples and they could not heal him.”

They could not.

But they should have.

This father was not only desperate but also disappointed. His encounter with Jesus’ closest companions had left his questions unanswered, his son unhealed, his heart still broken. Nothing about his circumstances had changed even though he encountered the men whom Jesus had given “authority over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal every kind of disease and every kind of sickness” (Matt. 10:1). Even without the Messiah’s physical presence, the disciples had been empowered to work the Messiah’s wonders. An encounter with them should have been as fruitful as an encounter with Him.

Instead, what a shame . . . they could not.

You, adopted child, have been endowed with God’s Spirit. You are a temple in which God’s power and presence pulsates. This gift is not only to enable communion between you and your Father but also to empower you to function as His hands and feet within your sphere of influence. Those who have yet to encounter Him should encounter His power through you. They should never leave our presence in a state of spiritual dissonance – saddened and discontented that their encounter with a Jesus follower left no proof of Jesus’ power.

Their deepest questions should find discerning answers.

Their practical needs should find generous solutions.

Their hurting heart should find empathetic compassion.

Their deadened soul should find redemption and reawakening.

Their entire lives should be touched by the supernatural . . . through you.

May there never be a solitary person to leave our presence saying:

They could not.

Because by His Spirit, we can.

Today, may you recognize the power you have been given by the God of heaven to be the answer to someone else’s prayer.

Not by your power. Not by your might.

But by the Spirit of God.


*Excerpt from Awaken: 90 Days with the God Who Speaks. Available August 2017.