Happy Monday, Good Readers! Today, I’m reblogging something from one of our most recent subscribers, Lori. Lori writes I spectacular blog called A Display of His Spendor. I unfortunately haven’t met Lori in real life, so I don’t have any real life stories to tell you, but there was this kind of funny moment when she posted her first comment here. The comment was a response to my post When One of Us Forgets the Tune, and it was full of wisdom and gentleness, and for a moment, I was pretty sure that Lori #2 was Lori #1 (I assigned numbers based on the order in which they appeared in my life). For those of you who don’t know, I have a SPECTACULAR friend named Lori, who I’ve known for about a decade. She nearly always adds wisdom and gentleness to my life, so it was confusing to me that Lori #2, who I’ve never met, wasn’t actually Lori #1 who’s been in my life since high school. I actually called Lori #1 to make sure that she wasn’t the same person as Lori #2 who’d so brilliantly commented on one of my blog posts. So anyway, this is a recent post from Lori #2, and you should check out her blog by clicking here.
November 5, 2010 by Lori
“People brought all their sick to him and begged him to let the sick just touch the edge of his cloak, and all who touched him were healed.” (Matt. 14:35b-36)
I’ve been reading “A Cast of Characters” by Max Lucado. It’s a book about different characters in scripture. He is a wonderful writer because he makes the people in each story come to life. Often times he sets the scene in modern day so we can relate better to the character. He’s quite profound in what he writes. I have been a fan of his for many years. In today’s story, he talked about the rich man that came to Jesus wanting to know what he has to do to be saved. Max has a whole chapter telling about the man and his lack of humility. He talks about the fact that he’s very rich and probably hasn’t had much of a struggle in life. He has always had all that he needed. But, that all changes when he meets Jesus.
Jesus goes through all of the commands with this man and he doesn’t realize he’s a sinner. He tells Jesus he has kept all of the commands. He honestly thinks he is perfect. I want to point out that we are often the same way. We have good days and bad days. Our good days come when we are met with little or no adversity. Our recipe for a good day consists of some kind words with a sprinkling of forgiveness. It is filled with a gentle and giving spirit and a dash of prayer. When the day comes to a close, we look back and think we had a pretty good day because we didn’t screw up today. We didn’t yell at anyone. We didn’t become upset. We kept our tongue and so we are pleased. That’s how this rich man felt. I’m a pretty good guy. I keep the commandments. Honestly, I’ve got this. I don’t need healing. I just want to follow because I’m good.
After reading this chapter in Max’s book, I read the fourteenth chapter of the book of Matthew. It has a lot in that little section about the miracles of Jesus. But the last line is the one that caught my eye. “People brought all their sick to him and begged him to let the sick just touch the edge of his cloak, and all who touched him were healed.” I was wondering if they had heard of the woman who touched Jesus’ cloak and was healed from her hemorrhaging. If so, the story spread fast. Now everyone that was sick just wanted to touch His cloak. They were desperate people. But they had hope and so they were begging for healing. They were begging for some relief. They were sick and they knew that Jesus was their only hope. Even the people who loved them knew of their need for a Savior.
These are two very different stories. First is the man who is sick with pride and doesn’t see it. He is so full of himself; he doesn’t see his need for healing. I think this is the worst kind of sickness. It’s the kind that blinds us to our need for Jesus. It is the kind that says, we’re okay just the way we are. It’s the kind that keeps us from having a heart like Christ. This is a sad place to be, because we don’t want to hear it when someone tells us we need to step down from our self appointed throne and kneel before the throne of grace. We are pleased with our easy little life and we don’t want to mess with something that is working for us. The second story is one of desperation. The sick and those around them knew they needed healing. They were even willing to touch the hem of Jesus cloak. That to me suggests they were on their knees seeking to be healed. They knew exactly where they needed to be. They understood that they were sick.
Both of these stories reflect our hearts at one time or another. Let’s face it, sometimes we are prideful. Sometimes we have little need for Jesus. Sometimes, we forget that we are sinners and need to rely on the Savior each and every day. There are other times we are painfully aware that we are sin sick. We screw up and need forgiveness. We stumble and need a Heavenly Hand to help us up. We know we are in need of some healing. And so we assume the position on our knees and seek the Savior.
Each story had a different outcome. In the first story, the man walked away sad because he was not willing to give up all that he had to follow Christ. He was sad because for once in his life he had to sacrifice to gain. Up until now he had just gathered things because of his wealth. He thought he could add Jesus to his possessions. Unfortunately, Jesus can’t be bought. So he went away sad. In the second story, the people were healed. They were made whole. They regained their lives. They were undoubtedly filled with joy. One man gave up the riches of heaven. Others found their treasure on their knees. “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” (Matt 6:21)