Is there any greater display of power than the power it takes to raise the dead to life? For the earliest believers, it had to be a jolt just to be close to the power displayed in Jesus.

That mighty "lightning bolt" has been seen and heard through the centuries and can be seen and heard still in the lives of Jesus-followers today.

That's good news; especially if you're in need of a jolt of God's power today.

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Then he led them out as far as Bethany, and, lifting up his hands, he blessed them. While he was blessing them, he withdrew from them and was carried up into heaven. And they worshiped him, and returned to Jerusalem with great joy; and they were continually in the temple blessing God.

Luke 24:50-53

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What’s a blessing? Growing up, I usually associated it with the prayer before a meal, but a blessing is actually much more.

Blessing gets the final word in Luke’s Gospel. This final scene from Jesus’ earthly ministry begins and ends with blessing. As Jesus prepares to leave his disciples, he blesses them. In simplest terms, this means that he speaks well of them. In his last words to them, he affirms and encourages them for their mission to come. Of course, positive words from the risen Lord are more than just a morale boost – they impart real resurrection power.

As Jesus withdraws, the disciples respond to his blessing with joyful worship, and this pattern continues for weeks to come. The final verse of Luke records that the disciples made a habit of blessing God. In other words, they spoke well of God, gathering together as a community to testify about the risen Savior who had blessed them.

Joshua Hays

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Risen Lord Jesus, I bless you. You are greater than any king, more loving than any parent, and more faithful than the closest friend. Grant me resurrection power to tell of your goodness to all that I meet. Amen.

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Feel the power that rises beneath you,
Raising you up to embrace the life
That God intends for you to know.

Carry yourself, then, with humble confidence,
Aware that it is the very hand of God
That holds you upright and alive.

Joshua Hays

Joshua Hays recently graduated from divinity school with his Master of Divinity degree. He currently works at the Passport national office in Birmingham, Alabama, and has served churches there and in Tennessee.

The Old Rugged Cross

Clay Mottley

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