READ: Luke 8:22-39
THINK: What amazes you? Whatever it is, it's likely to get your attention. And whatever gets your attention has potential to influence you and even to change your life. In fact, if amazement turns to inspiration, and inspiration becomes passion, it can literally control your life. So what are you passionate about? What drives your dreams? Is your relationship with Jesus the controlling influence in your life? Do His love, power and purposes continue to amaze you? If so, your relationship with God will remain fresh, allowing Him to do amazing things through you.
RESPOND: Why do you think that the disciples' view of Jesus at this point was a mixture of fear and amazement (v. 25)? In what ways should Christ's followers continue to have a sense of amazement toward Him? What does it mean to be demon-possessed? (See 8:27-33 note. For more on this subject, see article on Power Over Satan and Demons, p. 1347.) What does the demons' interaction with Jesus reveal about the Lord? Aside from literal demon-possession, in what other ways do the forces of evil enslave, control and abuse people, spiritually and otherwise? Why would the people ask Jesus to leave their region after they had obviously witnessed His lifeliberating power? How do you think people today would feel if Jesus caused this sort of "disruption" in their town?
PRAY: Ask God to give you a continual sense of wonder and amazement regarding Jesus and His purposes-- not because you don't expect great things--but because He is an awesome God who is worthy of your praise.
ACT: As you go through the day, notice the people around you in every situation and setting. Consider how the forces of evil seem to have control or influence over so many. Some of the effects are apparent in people who are angry or rebellious. Others may be dealing with obvious pain or desperate situations. Some are simply lonely or depressed. Behaviors and lifestyles reveal that people are deceived spiritually. As you pass and encounter people, pray silently that God will reveal himself to them in a special way and that they might turn to Him for hope and new life.
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