September Mission Moment
Do you remember what it was like when you first understood the Gospel? Maybe it wasn’t the first time you heard it, but it was the first time you actually had eyes to see it. How did you feel in that moment? For me, it was a time when the Holy Spirit revealed the Father’s unrelenting love for me to a greater depth than I had ever known. In that moment it was like a weight lifted and I was so full of joy that the cares of the world seemed to fade away.
The story of Jesus healing the leper (in Luke 5:12-14 and Mark 1:45) reminds me of this joy, and how this joy affects us. As Jesus entered a city, there was a man full of leprosy who came and fell on his face before Jesus. “Lord, if you will, you can make me clean.” Jesus reached out his hand and touched him, saying “I will; be clean”. Instantly, the leprosy left him. Jesus commanded him to tell no one, but to go and show himself to the priest and make an offering for his cleansing according to Jewish law. But the man went out and shared the news freely, so much so that Jesus could no longer enter a town openly because all the people in that region were eager to see him.
Perhaps since the Leper didn’t obey Jesus, he isn’t a good example of who we should be like. But not so fast.. he actually does provide us with the natural and right response we ought to have to the salvation of the Lord. Jesus commanded him to not tell others, but he was so overcome with joy that he told others anyways. Now on the other side of Jesus’ death and resurrection, Jesus actually gives us the opposite command: “Go into all the world and make disciples” (Matt 28:19), and ironically, we often struggle to obey. This man was healed of his physical disease and he shared the good news of Jesus with everyone around him. We were given something even greater - eternal life and salvation from our sins. How much more ought we to overflow with the good news to the world?
Lord Jesus, forgive us for growing cold and accustomed to your grace. Fill us afresh with the joy of your salvation. Soften our hearts every morning with your mercy - your grace that was so costly; your grace that we never deserved.
“Come, everyone who thirsts, come to the waters” (Isa 55:1). Come to Jesus and drink of the Living Water. Taste and see that the Lord is good, and then in your joy “share the hope that is within you” (1 Peter 3:15).