The gospels are a story about OPPORTUNITY. Who would perceive it correctly and who would mistake it for something else.  

Two shoe salesmen were sent to Africa to see if there was a market for their product.

The first salesman reported back, “This is a terrible business opportunity, no-one wears shoes.”

The second salesman reported back, “This is a fantastic business opportunity, no-one wears shoes.”  Please send me more containers.

Can you believe how amazing it would have been to have a once in creation opportunity with GOD. Have you ever thought about the opportunity the people of Palestine had when God incarnate turned up into their world. Remember that this group of dispossessed poverty stricken people in a small far flung territory of the Roman have not had any hope for 400 years. No word from God, no man of God, no prophet just silence for 400 years had not heard from God for 400 years when suddenly God turns up wrapped in flesh to heal, restore help and given hope and vision to them. This was an incredible opportunity for the people who had been looking for more than just religion or politics or social upheaval or domination by an occupying force. 

In my life time of experience I’ve learnt one thing.. It’s that opportunities create more, but they also demand more.  More courage, more insight, more investment, more responsibility, more faith.  

Matthew Chapter 9 because in Matthew 9 You see Jesus in full flight from the verse one right through verse 38. Everything he's doing is about seizing the opportunity. It's about grasping the chance that's in front of him to impact the people around about him.   

This is the chapter that describes the woman with the issue of blood who wants more than just sickness.  She is prepared to endure more to get more…so she crawls through the crowd is prepared to break through because she wants more. Then there is jairus who wants MORE than just religion who takes a great risk and falls at Jesus feet begging for help for his daughter who is dying.  In this chapter, Jesus agenda is frenetic. He is recruiting more leaders and more disciples.   He heals 2 blind men, casts a demon out of a mute man, answers more questions and travels everywhere healing and helping people.   

Matthew 9:1 And getting into a boat he crossed over and came to his own city. 2 And behold, some people brought to him a paralytic, lying on a bed. And when Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralytic, “Take heart, my son; your sins are forgiven.   he then said to the paralytic “Rise, pick up your bed and go home.” 7 And he rose and went home. 8 When the crowds saw it, they were afraid, and they glorified God, who had given such authority to men.

Jesus Calls Matthew

9 As Jesus passed on from there, he saw a man called Matthew sitting at the tax booth, and he said to him, “Follow me.” And he rose and followed him.

10 And as Jesus[b] reclined at table in the house, behold, many tax collectors and sinners came and were reclining with Jesus and his disciples. 11 And when the Pharisees saw this, they said to his disciples, “Why does your teacher eat with tax collectors and sinners?” 12 But when he heard it, he said, “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. 13 Go and learn what this means: ‘I desire mercy, and not sacrifice.’ For I came not to call the righteous, but sinners.”

A Question About Fasting

14 Then the disciples of John came to him, saying, “Why do we and the Pharisees fast,[c] but your disciples do not fast?” 

A Girl Restored to Life and a Woman Healed

18 While he was saying these things to them, behold, a ruler came in and knelt before him, saying, “My daughter has just died, but come and lay your hand on her, and she will live.” 19 And Jesus rose and followed him, with his disciples.20 And behold, a woman who had suffered from a discharge of blood for twelve years came up behind him and touched the fringe of his garment, 21 for she said to herself, “If I only touch his garment, I will be made well.” 22 Jesus turned, and seeing her he said, “Take heart, daughter; your faith has made you well.” And instantly[d] the woman was made well. 26 And the report of this went through all that district.

Jesus Heals Two Blind Men

27 And as Jesus passed on from there, two blind men followed him, crying aloud, “Have mercy on us, Son of David.” 28 When he entered the house, the blind men came to him, and Jesus said to them, “Do you believe that I am able to do this?” They said to him, “Yes, Lord.” 29 Then he touched their eyes, saying, “According to your faith be it done to you.” 30 And their eyes were opened. 

32 As they were going away, behold, a demon-oppressed man who was mute was brought to him. 

33 And when the demon had been cast out, the mute man spoke. And the crowds marveled, saying, “Never was anything like this seen in Israel. 

Jesus is in a HURRY.  He’s healing people everywhere, casting out demons,answering hard questions, dealing with critics, recruiting leaders for the cause and going every where to all the cities teaching and healing.

35 And Jesus went throughout all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues and proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom and healing every disease and every affliction. 36 When he saw the crowds, he had compassion for them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. 

In this passage theopportunites are so great and the need is so overwhelming.  He’s in demand and he’s in a hurry.

As I was reading this I had a revelation about why I feel in such a hurry. 

I don't know if you noticed it but God’s got this great plan for Atlanta.  When you look at the chaos of our nation, the protests, the corruption, the trouble and the hatred, you know that we live in the greatest days of the church.   Opportunity is knocking on our door.   If we see ourselves as part of the morass then we will lose hope, and get sucked into the vortex of the never ending problems and division but if you see it as God sees it, you will cry out to him for MORE.   The only answer to the ills of our society is a life giving healthy functioning church. Not a perfect church.   Couldyouseriously see a transformation happening in our city.

And so there's an opportunity for you and I to help more people, reach more people and do more good.   God has given us a incredible opportunity.  More influence, more impact, more miracles, more life, more people saved, more families helped, more marriages helped, more fear destroyed. 


it's really interesting because if you start to analyze some of Jesus conversations and look at his behavior…. it's all about MORE.   It's all about the opportunities and what you're going to do about it. The only way to seize opportunities is to create MORE.  More demands more.

“The harvest is great, but the workers are few. 38 So pray to the Lord who is in charge of the harvest; ask him to send more workers into his fields.”

In other words the opportunities are huge but we need more.

If you are a farmer, you know that a harvest demands more of us. MORE opportunities always demand more of you. We think of opportunities. It's a great thing and they are.  Opportunities are great If we can answer the more question. Can you give more? Can you work more,  can you embrace more? Can you grow more? Can you recruit more? All the more questions come home to roost. And often people miss their opportunity. 

From John13-17 is Jesus preparing his disciples for a move of God like they have never seen.  

It starts off with Jesus teaching them how to serve. He says listen I've watched you guys and you're full of zeal full of enthusiasm but you're jostling for position and so you need more of a servant heartAnd so he shows them by taking the towel and serving them.

Jesus is not focused on his betrayal as much as he’s focused on preparing his disciples for MORE. 

Jesus goes on John 13 to 17 to talk about more of the Holy Spirit. You're going to need more of the Holy Spirit people.  This is what I told you about in chapter 7 at the feast.. More understanding about whom the Holy Spirit is. 

Then he says to them that they need to believe more and if they do, they will do greater things than Jesus..

12 Very truly I tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father. 13 And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. 14 You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it.

Then he goes on to promise them the Holy Spirit. To promise them that there is MORE coming.


Then he tells them that if they abide in him and he in them, they would bear more fruit.

Then he tells he has MORE to tell them but they can’t handle anymore.

12 “I have much more to say to you, more than you can now bear. 

Then he tells them why they need MORE love, more devotion, more care and more hope about the future.

16 “All this I have told you so that you will not fall away.  

Let’s fast forward to Acts 2:2 And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place.

Here’s where opportunity rewards those that have given more responded in faith with more.   Jesus had told them love each other more and care for each more and after the crisis where do you find the disciples.  In the upper room, caring for each other. There striving has gone. They are able to choose the 12th apostle, they are able to wait for God to move and then suddenly.

Jesus ends Matt 9 with this amazing statement. The opportunities are so large but we need MORE. More care and more people.  

“The harvest is great, but the workers are few. 38 So pray to the Lord who is in charge of the harvest; ask him to send more workers into his fields.”

It’s interesting that the very next verse in Matthew 10:1 and it’s Jesus sending out his 12 disciples. 


Coming up at Influencers