You have a story

13 November 2013 |

YOU HAVE A STORY

TODAY’S SCRIPTURE REFERENCE: Luke 8:26-39

Luke 8

New Living Translation (NLT)

Jesus Heals a Demon-Possessed Man

26 So they arrived in the region of the Gerasenes, across the lake
from Galilee. 27 As Jesus was climbing out of the boat, a man who was
possessed by demons came out to meet him. For a long time he had been
homeless and naked, living in a cemetery outside the town.

28 As soon as he saw Jesus, he shrieked and fell down in front of him.
Then he screamed, “Why are you interfering with me, Jesus, Son of
the Most High God? Please, I beg you, don’t torture me!” 29 For
Jesus had already commanded the evil spirit to come out of him.
This spirit had often taken control of the man. Even when he was
placed under guard and put in chains and shackles, he simply broke
them and rushed out into the wilderness, completely under the
demon’s power.

30 Jesus demanded, “What is your name?”

“Legion,” he replied, for he was filled with many demons. 31 The
demons kept begging Jesus not to send them into the bottomless pit.

32 There happened to be a large herd of pigs feeding on the hillside
nearby, and the demons begged him to let them enter into the pigs.

So Jesus gave them permission. 33 Then the demons came out of the man
and entered the pigs, and the entire herd plunged down the steep
hillside into the lake and drowned.

34 When the herdsmen saw it, they fled to the nearby town and the
surrounding countryside, spreading the news as they ran. 35 People
rushed out to see what had happened. A crowd soon gathered around
Jesus, and they saw the man who had been freed from the demons. He was
sitting at Jesus’ feet, fully clothed and perfectly sane, and they
were all afraid. 36 Then those who had seen what happened told the
others how the demon-possessed man had been healed. 37 And all the
people in the region of the Gerasenes begged Jesus to go away and
leave them alone, for a great wave of fear swept over them.

So Jesus returned to the boat and left, crossing back to the other
side of the lake. 38 The man who had been freed from the demons begged
to go with him. But Jesus sent him home, saying, 39 “No, go back to
your family, and tell them everything God has done for you.” So he
went all through the town proclaiming the great things Jesus had done
for him.

This man had a story. He had been living a tormented life for a long
time, subject to demonic influence and being controlled by many demons
who called themselves “Legion”. We read the story. Jesus drives
out the demons, who go into pigs that run into the ocean and drown
themselves.

The end of this account is significant. After being delivered, this
man – naturally filled with gratitude and probably awe – begs Jesus to
let Him go with Him. But Jesus says no. Not just because He doesn’t
want the man to join Him on His travels, or because the boat is full,
or because He was probably unpopular with whoever owned the pigs, but
because He wanted the man to “go back to his family and tell them
everything God has done for him”.

You have a story. It may not involve demons or pigs or even huge
crowds and miracles. But, you have a story of “everything God has
done for you”. How often, if ever, do you speak of your story and
everything God has done for you? Unless your story implicates others
or reveals private details or others or is best not told because of
legal/ethical reasons, your story should be told! That doesn’t mean
all the nasty details of your live before meeting Christ need to be
shared, but the testimony of God’s greatness to you /does/.

Start thinking today how you could tell /your/ story in a way that
would encourage someone in your life. Ask God to help you be ready to
tell your story when the time comes. Then, when it comes, tell that
story of victory and watch people around you be encouraged.

A PRAYER TO PRAY

Jesus thank You for all You have done in my life. Thank You that Your
grace and mercy have always been sufficient and that today, because of
Your love, I have a story to tell of Your greatness. Please prepare me
with boldness, wisdom and discernment to share my story of Your
greatness in my life. Amen.

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