Season of Stress: SATURDAY
With all the noise in the world, do you hear the voice of God? Your calendar tells you what to do, but do you remember who you are? Being comes before doing. This is a call to put first things first. Return to the Lord with this daily pattern of prayer and devotion. Set aside this time as a sanctuary. Find a space free of distraction and follow this pattern.
Focus on people in pain.
In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
Spirit of the Living God, fall afresh on me. Melt me. Mold me. Fill me. Use me. Amen.
(from the hymn, Spirit of the Living God)
As he passed by, he saw a man blind from birth. 2 And his disciples asked him, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?” 3 Jesus answered, “It was not that this man sinned, or his parents, but that the works of God might be displayed in him. (John 9:1-3)
Jesus passed by a blind man. He was asked, “Why is he blind? Was it because of his sin? His parents?” Jesus’ answer is beyond their question. The issue isn’t “who’s fault is it?” Sin is sin, and it’s everywhere and in everyone. Why someone gets sick or is handicapped is beyond our knowledge, other than to know we live in a broken world.
Jesus’ answer points to something else. The blind man’s malady is a place for God to prove himself the Remedy. Pain is a place for God’s healing. Suffering is the soil for God’s glory.
Who does Jesus go to in the gospels? People in pain. The blind, lame, sick, oppressed, and demon possessed. His ministry always took him to people with deficiencies, not abundance. It’s the sick who need a doctor, not the healthy.
The fact is, you have your own needs. The good news is that Jesus comes near to those tender places. He applies salve to the wounds we bear.
That is our inspiration for going to hurting people. Focus on people in pain. Serve someone suffering more than you. In this moment, God is calling us to remarkable service, generosity, and witness. God is doing a mighty thing in the tragedy of the era. People in our communities are more receptive to him than they have ever been. Now is the time to go. Here is the calling of the Christian. Bring the salve to people in pain. Remember, you are loved by God in Jesus. And you are sent in his name into the world.
And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. (Phil. 4:7)