There are many people who are doing amazing things in many places of the world—things which Jesus described as being greater than his miracles. The place I know best is here at Open Door Mission. Many of the amazing things that I have experienced here brings the conversation beginning at the end of John 13 between Peter, Thomas, Philip, and Jesus to my mind.
John tells us that Jesus explained to the disciples that he was going away to prepare a place for them. This really troubled Peter, Thomas, and Philip. They obviously did not want Jesus to leave. Who would? After Jesus predicted his death and told the disciples they could not come with him. Peter wanted to know why and made a braggadocios statement that implied whatever Jesus was going to through he could do. He could even “lay down is life.”
Thomas followed with a very practical question “how do we get there?” Jesus answered him indirectly and to his original point. As I read the story, I see that Jesus’ answer did not help the disciples understand. So Philip tries to makes sense out of the statement by offering a compromise in spiritual terms, “Lord, show us the Father and that will be enough for us.”
Peter wanted Jesus to know that they were capable of following him; Thomas wanted to know how to physically get where Jesus was going; and Philip attempted to resolve the situation by asking for one more miracle. Jesus told them that everyone who believes in Jesus (12), “…will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these…”
This truth relates to many of the people who call Open Door Mission home. Two gentlemen in particular come to mind. They are ready to graduate from our New Life Recovery program. They joined the program because it was offered to them. They were at the place in their lives that they realized they had no answer for their addiction that was hastening their death. They both had placed their lives in jeopardy many times. They were running on fumes and borrowed time.
They heard the good news of Jesus and immediately responded to the calling. They immediately began to care for the men around them. They reinforced what was being taught in classes and in case management. They progressed through classes and interacted with folks who were on the fringe. They encouraged them to work the program and shared their stories without shame. They sacrificed so that others, “who were in more need” could get what they needed. For example, when the need arose they would not take a place on a van to a popular church at times so others could attend. They simply walked to a church close to Open Door Mission—knowing everyone would be fed the word of God.
They keep encouraging friends who decided not to enter/continue in the program. They know they do not have everything right. They now understand the need to live the generous life of Jesus. They show Jesus to others who can’t see Jesus in people who don’t share their desperate circumstances. They serve as they are being served. They care for guys who distance themselves from Open Door Mission. They represent as they are still being forged. They live for Jesus so others can be saved by Jesus. They are living the life. They are doing “things greater” through the power of the Holy Spirit and so can you!
Open Door Mission