From: Rich Carlson
Date: January 21, 2021
Subject: It's January 21; Good Morning Union

Luke 9

“What good is it for a person to gain the whole world and yet lose or forfeit his very self?” Vs 25


Jesus prepared the apostles to go out and change the world. He illustrated 5 ways that He equipped them before the went (see chapter 8, and yesterday’s GMU!) He showed them:


  1. The power of His Word and the importance of being “persevering.” How many times Jesus explained that it’s not just a casual exposure to His word; it’s digging as for hidden treasure and searching not just glancing. The first thing He gave them was His Word
  2. His power over nature- He calmed the sea
  3. His power over demons- He cast them into the pigs
  4. His power over disease- He healed the woman with the bleeding problem
  5. His power over death- He raised the little girl


Then chapter 9 says He “gave them power” and “sent them out” to proclaim His message.


When they came back He showed them he had power over hunger by feeding the 5000, He took them aside for a class in clarification by asking them, “Who do people say that I am?” He trained them, sent them out, brought them back, and spent time answering whatever questions they might have encountered. He explained to them the importance of understanding God’s timing and why bad things happen to good people, even to Jesus Himself. As they wrestled with those life-changing questions and paradigms, He reminded them that this journey with Him was not just a convenient option or an available “genie in the bottle” for emergencies decision. It’s a commitment for life, accomplished in a clear four-step process:

  1. “Come after Me
  2. Deny yourself
  3. Take up your cross
  4. Follow Me”


He took them up on the mountain and showed them that He had power even over humanity as He flashed his divinity before them in the transfiguration.


Then more healing, more life challenges by illustrating that real power comes to little children because they know how to trust that which is more powerful than them. And He again reminded them that challenges are about the only time we can reorient and grow, and that if I want this thing called Christianity to work it costs me everything except the very best. And that’s what Jesus has in store for His disciples and me, and you.


I was reminded of Jesus’ summary challenge, as he returned to heaven, recorded in Matthew 28: 18-20, “ALL POWER has been given to Me, therefore GO and you now make disciples of all people….” As He demonstrated His power by healing the demon-possessed man He said, “Go home and tell what God has done for you.” Jesus showed the apostles His power and then send them out. He now challenges me to do whatever it takes to first see His power and then “go out and tell what God has done for me.” That’s all sharing my faith is—telling people what I have experience of the power, forgiveness, love, mercy and goodness of God.


Have a great day experiencing the power of committing your whole life to Him,

Pastor Rich


Quote for the day:      Sadly, we often gaze at our problems and merely glance at God.” Michelle Velazquez Mesnard

PS        Our first uGather of the semester!! For those who are new to our school family, uGather is our weekly “chapel” time (10:35am in the church). Join us each week as we all come together as a Union College family to build community with each other and fellowship with God and His word. Our Mid America Union youth directors will be presenting today’s gathering. Our own Ricky Melendez will be speaking.

PPS      Check out the Atrium today and tomorrow if you are interested in, or even just want to learn more about, summer camp ministries. Camp directors from Mid America are here to answer your questions and help you discover if this might be what god is calling you to.

PPPS    HeartScan applications are available this week. Pick one up in Campus Ministries if you are interested in being a part of our spiritual mentoring program.