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Wednesday, June 5, 2024
Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "Tell Me The Stories Of Jesus"1 (Lyrics)

Luke 8:38-39 – The man from whom the demons had gone out begged to go with him, but Jesus sent him away, saying, "Return home and tell how much God has done for you." So the man went away and told all over town how much Jesus had done for him. (NIV)

The conclusion of the gospel story about Jesus healing the demon-possessed man has always intrigued me, because what happened after he was delivered is so similar to my own story. The cured man wanted to follow Jesus, probably because he was so thankful for having regained his senses. After years of being excluded from his own community, he knew that he could trust Jesus, so he wanted to become a disciple or a servant to help Christ with His ministry.

In my own life, I felt that same thankfulness when Jesus rescued me from alcoholism. I was enslaved to my addiction, and even though I knew that I was harming myself physically, as well as mentally, I could not liberate myself from the chains of compulsion. It took a life-changing moment of trusting Jesus completely before I was released from my obsession. I couldn't have escaped my drinking problem without Christ's grace and peace. When I understood what Jesus had done for me, I just wanted to serve Him like the demoniac.

Although the healed man wanted to serve in the presence of his Saviour, Christ had other plans for him to serve Him. Jesus told him to go back and share his amazing experience with his own community. The people there were fearful of Jesus because of His almighty power, so Christ gave the man a personal mission and an individual calling to return home to his people as a witness to God's mercy and grace. Instead of being afraid of Jesus, the cured man could convince them of God's compassion and love.

This is a challenge for all of us — to be effective witnesses of Christ's love to our own people, our own families, our own friends. Whatever goodness that God has wrought in each of us through Christ, we are meant to share it with others and not just to keep it to ourselves. We live in a broken world where madness is creating a lot of fear in our communities. Christ can heal this, too, but only if we are willing to share faith, hope, and love in compassionate ways to repair the damage around us.

Point to ponder: How do I share my faith with my own community?

Prayer: Lord Jesus, You came into our lives to heal our brokenness and restore us to God's love. Encourage us to become personal witnesses of the healing and hope that You bring to the world. In Your holy name, we pray. Amen.

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About the author:

John Stuart <>
Knoxville, Tennessee, USA

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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    Thanks for the encouraging words, John.

    Thanks John, inspiring devotional. Blessings.

    This message is so Good, True, and Encouraging!

    Thank you for your story of healing and hope. It was inspiring and will encourage many. God bless!

    Share what we have – love, understanding, hope for today and tomorrow, a smile to strangers.

    You are serving by your deeds John. Blessings on your courage to share your story to encourage others!

    You’ve been a faithful servant, John.
    Thank you for continuing to write.

    Thank you for sharing your story. I think the personal stories have such power when related as you did to the scripture.

    May God continue to bless you and inspire you as you continue to share his blessing with others.
    (P.E.I., Canada)

    Good morning, John,
    I was thinking about the hymn that was chosen to go with your devotional. People telling their story of Jesus’ life in the Bible helps us grow our faith. Us sharing our story with others can help God grow their faith. It is up to us to just open the door so that God can do the rest for others. When we share our story, our faith becomes real to others. We don’t have to know if our story helps someone, we just have to share it and then let God work His wonder.
    Thank you for sharing your story and that “trusting Jesus completely” is what made the difference in your struggle. Blessings.

    Dear John, as I read your words, I could recognize the writing of someone who really knew the story of redemption and that enormous desire to give all we have for HIM who rescued us. Even though my only claim to need, when HE came like a lightning strike into my life, was the inability to receive, recognize, accept, benefit from, the love of my family and friends, the entry of Christ into my experience, my soul, was an extreme change. How amazing to see the terrible obsession and addiction to alcohol alongside the terrible prison of loneliness or lack of ability to connect on a level of love, on the same plane! In fact I’ve never thought of that before this moment. Whatever people are doing ‘wrong’ is somehow nothing more than an inability to “CONNECT”. Like having a trailer with a broken hitch!! Or a train car with a damaged connector!! It’s pretty common to ‘compare’ problems, but now I see that there’s really only one, and every human problem is just a different expression of that inability to “connect” with God, in Christ. How amazing!! Your words sure made an impression on me today! They are truly ‘life changing’ – praise AND glory, to GOD! Thank you so much John.

    Always provocative… the theme of “community” speaks loudly, after the isolation caused by Covid. Thanks for the prodding!
    Bless you, John.

    Hi John,
    Thank you once more for your devotional writing. The question you ask about demonstrating Christ and his love to our communities is a constant in my mind. A year ago our small church started having Taco Tuesday. From 7 to 8:30 we stood on the corner of a busy highway in our small town and handed out breakfast tacos. I thought it was a wonderful ministry…even trained some comments on Facebook. HOWEVER, I missed one meeting of the committee in charge and the group voted not to continue. I was and am so disappointed. One person said, “Not one new person even came to our church.” Of course, I did not see that as the point of the effort. My focus was doing something for harried Moms, people going to work who had not had time to eat, etc.
    Disappointed, of course, but still love the folks in our church.

    Yes. Our own fear, unpreparedness, keeps us in our comfort zones and people around us are perishing. Such tragedy!

    Thank you, John, for sharing your testimony and the challenge to be effective witnesses.

    Amen and amen! Thank God for your deliverance. Blessings.


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