Friday, November 9, 2012

Just because...

There's this whole side to Jesus I had been missing all along.

This is what I read this morning:
Soon afterward, Jesus went into a town called Nain, and his disciples and a large crowd went along with him.  As he approached the town gate, a dead person was being carried out - the only son of his mother, and she was a widow.  And a large crowd from the town was with her.  When the Lord saw her, his heart went out to her and he said, "Don't cry."  Then he went up and touched the coffin, and those carrying it stood still.  He said, "Young man, I say to you, get up!"  The dead man sat up and began to talk, and Jesus gave him back to his mother.  {Luke 7:11-15}

My jaw fell open as I read this passage.  I have read this account before, of that I am certain.  I've read every word of the New Testament before.  This little story is nestled between the faith of the Centurion and the woman with the alabaster jar, but I have no recollection of it, and none of it has been highlighted or underlined in either of my Bibles.  So this morning, I feel like I've unearthed something for the first time in this magnificent Word.

I imagine the scene.  I try to put myself on the dusty streets in the handmade clothing of that widow.  One son, now dead.  Who will take care of her?  How will she go on?  All that she had, lost, dead.  Not only her heart but her means of making it in the society around her.

She was stripped down to bare.  Nothing remained.  Grief so heavy one could see it as it weighed down upon that widow.  A grief too heavy for one to bear, the mass of it too much for her frame to handle.

I feel the grief, as Jesus did, too.  For he saw her... the Lord saw her, and his heart went out to her.    And then he said to her, "Don't cry."

Those two words in my Bible in bright red just protrude from the page.  "Don't cry," He says to me, an understanding, loving whisper I have never heard from Him before.

But He did not stop there.  No, He never stops where we think He should.  That's the lovely part about Jesus that makes no sense even to some Christians in our modern society who profess His name the loudest.  Jesus did something He had not even been asked to do, completely unsolicited, and seemingly out of sheer empathy.  He brought the dead man back to life.

Grace.

Precious friend, if you are reading these words today, it is no mistake.  Just as my discovery of this story for what seems to be the first time was no mistake as well.  Allow Jesus to touch your life, restore you, have His mighty way with you.  It's strange and familiar all at the same time.  Allow His Grace to wash over your soul and secure your place in Heaven for you, undeserved and unsolicited.  And don't listen to the voice of Satan anymore that tells you perhaps your misgivings and sins are bigger than the fellow next to you.  They're not.  There's enough clean water to go around.  Bathe in it... His love, His mercy, His amazing Grace.

And then, turn around, and share that love.  Share it, let it flow from you unending.

"Therefore, I tell you, her many sins have been forgiven - for she loved much.  But he who has been forgiven little loves little."  {Luke 7:47}

1 comment:

Nana's Notes said...

Just beautiful....as all of your words are! Keep writing and keep reading.