“He presented himself alive to them after his suffering by many proofs, appearing to them during forty days and speaking about the kingdom of God.” Acts 1:3 (ESV)
Sometimes I think about all the things Jesus did and why He did them. Not just the core stuff, like rising from the dead and all, but all the little stuff. Like appearing before 500 people, or chilling with the apostles for 40 days, or all the little miracles—which aren’t really little, but compared to conquering death and defeating sin, kind of are.
My ESV study Bible theorizes why Jesus did what he did: “Jesus appeared multiple times to his disciples and gave them many proofs to strengthen their faith. Solid evidence and knowledge of facts increase faith.” We’re prone to doubt, I think. A lot of athletes must replace their doubt with confidence before they can truly shine. The subconsious has proven to affect performance in the athletic sphere. A doubtful subconsious produces poor results. A confident subconsious produces better results. In our feature story on Kevin Streelman in our May 2013 DigiMag (click here to subscribe), Streelman says a quote I love:
“That’s the constant thing I’m battling and trying to get better with, to release that fear. I think that’s a beautiful place to be, to live without fear. And that’s the verse that’s written on my putter. It’s stamped into my putter, to vanish fear and doubt from your life because God is with you wherever you go. It doesn’t matter. True freedom is letting go of worldly fear.”
The bottom line is that Jesus did all these things, performed all these miracles, left His heavenly throne to be with mankind, partially, to strengthen our faith in Him, to vanish fear and doubt from our lives. And I want to reflect on the things he did, developing intimacy and reverence for Him, which produces mysterious wonder and a righteous fear that helps me love Him more.
By Stephen Copeland
Stephen Copeland is a staff writer and columnist at Sports Spectrum magazine. This devotional is taken from our most recent Training Table, a compilation of sports-related devotionals included in each print magazine. Log in here to access our most recent Training Table.