Author Archives: MikeS


John 20:25New International Version (NIV)

25 So the other disciples told him, “We have seen the Lord!”

But he said to them, “Unless I see the nail marks in his hands and put my finger where the nails were, and put my hand into his side, I will not believe.”

Thomas takes on a bad rap in this portion of scripture. Could we all of had said the same thing? Yes, some had seen him from the disciples, Mary Magdalene, and the followers on the road to Emmaus, but not Thomas.

We forget Thomas’ words in John 11:16. Thomas says to his fellow disciples, “Let’s go too and die with Jesus.” Heading back to Bethany to raise Lazarus from the dead was going to get them all killed. Yet, he says, “Let’s go and die.”

Only a man with a deep devotion to a person or cause would ever make such a statement. Thomas was truly loyal, but he had doubt, and for him, only physical proof would satisfy his pessimistic view.

If you look deeper into what is there in scripture and read between the lines, you will find a man having deep love for Jesus. Remember, he gave up everything to follow him. In that love, you find a man paralyzed on the inside over Christ’s death.

I know it does not say this in Scripture, but for a moment Jesus walked through the doors in John 20:25 just for Thomas. What a moment it was. Jesus asks for Thomas directly. “Thomas, put your finger here and look at my hands. Put your hand in the would on my side. Do not be faithless anymore. Believe!”

What a moment! We never again hear of Thomas being pessimistic. He now had proof! Later we see Jesus saying that he believed because he had seen Jesus. Then the Lord gives a blessing to us, “Blessed are those who believe without seeing me.”

At times, we get pessimistic and encounter doubts needing proof that Jesus hears our prayers. It is in those moments, men, that we hold onto the blessing of not seeing. That is called faith.

Strength and Courage



Vital Ministries News

Vital Men’s Breakfast

May 6 at the Newton Perkins

7:00 A.M.

Men, Fathers, Sons, Grandfathers, Friends

Come have breakfast, hang out, and have a short devotional time together.

Hope you can make it!!

Strength and Courage



Two of Jesus’ Followers

Luke 24:15New International Version (NIV)

15 As they talked and discussed these things with each other, Jesus himself came up and walked along with them;

As I stand back the day after Easter, my heart is still full of knowing our Savior lives! Can you imagine on that day when Jesus left the tomb, that he went out and met with two of his followers.

Obviously in this writing the men had no idea it was him. It says in Luke 24:16 that God kept them from recognizing him. These were two simple followers of Christ, not disciples, yet Jesus met with them.

These men are telling Jesus all what happened to the man from Nazareth. They called him a prophet and mighty teacher. They had not realized that he was the Messiah and the Savior of the world.

Jesus took time for two ordinary men who were called followers. Aren’t you encouraged by that today? Jesus continues to send his voice into our lives through the Holy Spirit. He is no longer limited to certain places. The Spirit is everywhere.

I pray that our lives continue to be impacted by the Risen King! That he still calls on ordinary men. He walks and talks with us no matter what road we are on.

In verse 32, the men say to each other, “Didn’t our hearts burn within us as he talked with us on the road.” Let’s allow our hearts to burn for Jesus. In doing so, we will stay the course of life and be men on fire for God!

Strength and Courage



Vital Ministries News

John 19:42New International Version (NIV)

42 Because it was the Jewish day of Preparation and since the tomb was nearby,they laid Jesus there.

Today is a day of silence in Scripture. After Jesus was crucified, he was laid in a tomb. Only Roman guards stood next to the tomb guarding for supposed grave robbers.

Even though Scripture is quiet, we know that our Lord was at work in Spirit. My mind goes back to that empty tomb I saw at Jerusalem. It was chilling to walk into that place of which they thought Jesus was laid.

Let’s look at today with eyes of over 2000 years ago. Remember what our Lord did as payment for our sins. A solemn thought at best. Yes, tomorrow is Easter, and we celebrate the Resurrection of our Lord. But today, let’s remember the sacrifice and keep our eyes on the cross.

Strength and Courage



Who Do You Say I Am

Mark 10:47New International Version (NIV)

47 When he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to shout, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!”

Two man are recorded in the book of Mark and Luke crying out for help. Both men cried out, “Have mercy on me.” Yet, only one of the two men has his name recorded, Bartimaeas. He was the vocal one.

These two men were on the streets of Jericho. I can remember just a few weeks ago as I was on a pilgrimage in Israel and passing through the town of Jericho. It is literally an oasis in a desert land. Palm trees with dates are all over this small little town. It was a place that had water.

I can just picture these men along the road that leads to the city of Jerusalem. They heard that Jesus of Nazareth was coming through. They knew of the miracles he had done, so they cried out, “Have mercy on me.”

Jesus, full of compassion, tells them to come here. So, they get up and walk towards the Messiah. It says in scripture that they jumped up. They were totally blind and had to listen for his voice to know which way to go.

We see Jesus here asking, “What is it that you want?” The men replied, “I want to see!” Jesus does not touch them here. He speaks with authority, “Go, your faith has healed you.” It says in that moment, they could see.

From that moment on the blind, Bartimaeas, who could now see, follows Jesus down the road to Jerusalem. He knew that Jesus was the Son of God. The Messiah had passed through.

Today, what do you need? Who is Jesus to you? Are you willing to follow him? He is still listening and willing to heal. All you have to say, “Have mercy on me.” He will give it.

Strength and Courage



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