“How is it that you do not understand?”

Sitting outside in the coolness of a central Texas morning, I read Matthew 16.  Jesus asked the disciples this pointed, un-sugar-coated question in verse 11–clearly He knew the answer, but His sharp tone brought me up a bit. The disciples thought He had been talking about bread–actual, physical bread–because they had stupidly crossed the sea without provisions. Instead, Jesus was offering them a gift: practical advice to watch out for Pharisaical thinking, little thoughts that could spoil their entire understanding of grace and God. But no…hung up on their own mistake, the disciples thought Jesus was chastising them.

It’s so tempting to look at those men and shake my head in wonder. It’s easy to denigrate them for being clueless. So self-absorbed! So lacking in vision! Yet how often am I stuck on stupid, not perceiving Your deeper, broader truth because I am fixated on bread?

The disciples were so hung up on their own mistake, they couldn’t see that Jesus was giving them a loving gift. Their focus was on their error, a mistake I am prone to make, as well. How often am I guilty of this, Lord? Help me see beyond my limitations to  Your generosity.

Why is it so hard to simply receive grace?

I forgot to bring bread, Lord. But you are the bread-giver, the miraculous feeder of men. Let me bring all my mistakes–all my sins–to you in humility. Let me humbly receive your gracious warnings that keep me purely focused on a transcendent life with You.

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