âBut the mercy of the Lord is from eternity to eternity on those who fear him, and his justice on their children’s children; To those who keep his covenant, and to those who remember his commandments to do them. Psalm 103:17-18
IT IS often difficult during trials to see the hand of God and recognize his love for us, but according to Reverend Barrington Daley, when we have reached the limits of our own self-sufficiency and recognize that we are nothing on our own, it is then that God shows himself and shows himself.
Minister of the Moravian Bethabara Church in Newport, Manchester, in his sermon last Sunday shared the stories of Peter and the miraculous catch of 153 fish after Jesus’ resurrection and the miracle of turning water into wine, both recorded in the book of John, as examples of how Jesus made impossibilities possible.
He said much like those stories where people surrendered and showed complete trust in God and trusted Him to help them, the same should be applied today.
âNets and jars can only be filled if they are empty, we have to empty ourselves. The Spirit allows us to empty ourselves so that Christ can fill us. We can never be filled with Jesus until we first empty ourselves.
Daley encouraged introspection and asked people to assess the things they needed to get rid of for God to take full control and be patient with the process.
“If Jesus were to show up now, would he be happy with how he finds you?” We can never be filled with Jesus until we are first emptied of pride, arroganceâ¦ Emptiness is not failure; the miracle begins when the wine is exhausted. Jesus shows up when the nets are empty. Do not cast down the jars and do not abandon your nets for these are the very places where Jesus shows himself to you.
He said Peter’s miraculous catch after many failed attempts is a representation of the salvation available to mankind, having recognized that mankind cannot be saved without keeping the commandments, seeking God’s grace and being guided by the Holy Spirit.
“The dark night of fishing has given way to the dawn of a new day, new hopes, new possibilities and that’s what the resurrection does for us. Darkness doesn’t win; light l “always prevails. In the light of this new day, Jesus shows Himself. Whatever darkness has overtaken you, whatever darkness you face in your life, that darkness is the circumstance in which Jesus will show Himself” , preached Minister Bethabara.
He added: “How many of you start the week thinking about the things you need to do and wondering how you’re going to get there when you look in your purse/wallet. It’s in the darkness of this reality that Jesus always comes for youâ¦ Jesus is never far away, always close at hand.
He said there is never a situation that God cannot fix and never far from grace.
âWhat looked like an end has now become a beginning. Jesus showed himself in the empty nets filled with big fish, the darkness that gave way to light, the nudity that was clothed, a charcoal fire of denial that became one of welcoming and the invitation, a last supper that becomes the first breakfast, and three of the Holocaust deniers who have been forgiven with affirmations of love.
The minister reminded congregants to keep in mind the ultimate sacrifice Jesus made to give us hope and life.
âOur life has been secured by the life of Christ and He has shown Himself to usâ¦As we continue to reflect on God’s love through Christ, let us always be mindful of what He has done for us and ensure no matter what we are going through, it is in these details of our lives that we best experience the resurrection power of God.