On Super Bowl Sunday morning Bears fans, Viking supporters, Chiefs loyalists, et al., and those less appreciative of gridiron gangs, gathered to worship God together and be in loving community. We collectively asserted our faith with Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing. With a goose bump raising descant on Holy, Holy Holy, we aimed to be a pleasing scent in the nostrils of the Lord God Almighty. Breaking into pair,s we shared in a unique time of lifting up each other needs.
Pastor shared a touching story from about two modern-day lepers in India. A bystander was witnessed reaching out to them in their humanity and scratching an itchy back as they lacked fingers. PK challenged us as to what we would have done.
Jesus miracles go beyond the physical miraculous phenomena. They facilitate the revelation of God’s glory and the changing of people’s hearts and perspectives. We also see Jesus meeting us in our humanity…touching us and clutching us…even in our ugliness and unclean state. We are to embrace His saving grace, be born again, and follow His example.
The demoniac in Mark 5 lived in a tomb isolated from his community who’d tried to keep him chained. After casting out his demons, Jesus actively values the man’s humanity…making sure he is clothed…and waiting with him until the neighbors came by. The demons weren’t just removed—the man’s humanity was restored. The demon-possessed man who’d feared Jesus would torture him was transformed and begged to go with Jesus, but Jesus sent him to testify to those who knew him at his worst so he might share the power of the Living God.
Later that same day, Christ was approached be a woman who suffered from bleeding for 12 years and was ritualistically set apart as unclean…unable to touch anything without making it unclean…or attend religious service…or offer a sacrifice…and whose self-image and spirit must have been very low. In her strong faith and desperation she pushed her way (touching people) and eventually grasped Jesus clothes. She was instantly, miraculously, physically healed. But Jesus then called her out, and trembling with fear, she fell at His feet. The physical miracle was done…but she still needed a righteous man to call her ‘Daughter’ and tell her to go in peace, clean, and free from suffering that had gone beyond just the physical.
All this was in the middle of a tired Jesus helping Jairus, a synagogue ruler, who had fall at his feet pleading to heal his little daughter who was dying. After his daughter was said to be dead, people didn’t want Jesus bothered. But Jesus said “Don’t be afraid…trust me.” He miraculously brought the 12 year old girl instantly to life. Then He tenderly spoke to her and took care of her humanity, requesting that she be fed.
When we fret and despair that things are going badly and feel out of control…we need to realize that our situation has never been out of the control of our Sovereign God. In these healing miracles, He knew at least 12 years before that—in His perfect timing—how both of these tragedies would work together for good.
Jesus reveals His perspective of finding great value in those with the lowest status and shows love to them, meting them in their humanity. In the midst of doing miracles, He reflects the value and humanity of the person involved. Do we do this when we interact with people—checkout clerks, janitors, impoverished people, uncool & unstylish people, difficult young children, etc.?
May we grow in seeing the value in people as Jesus does. May He love through us as He did in person...loving the low and unclean in society—even when we’re overwhelmed and tired—making them a priority…and look them in the eye, finding out their needs and extending ourselves to meet them in love…reflecting to them their value to God.