Beauty in Brokenness

"He has made everything Beautiful in it's time." Eccl. 3:11

on February 20, 2014

You know how sometimes you look at something you have seen a thousand times, and then notice something that you have never noticed before.  I feel like that happens all the time to me.  Especially with Scripture passages.  I loved growing up in Church and Sunday School.  But it is funny to look back at the lessons you were taught as a child and see that you just didn’t get it.  

When I was a kid, my favorite movie for awhile was Grease.  I loved singing and dancing.  I pretended to be one of the gang.  Even went so far as to act it out as it was playing.  A few years went by and I watched it again for old times sake.  And  it was a whole different movie to me!  There were so many things I never caught on to before.  There were parts that were so much more inappropriate than I had been able to understand at the age of 8.  The feeling of deception sank in.  My whole view on the movie changed. 

Don’t get me wrong… I still  love the movie.  But I am really glad that I was naive enough as a kid to enjoy what innocence of the fun songs, without knowing what all the jokes and dialogue were saying.

My experience with the scriptures is similar, but also very much different.  As I studied Jonah, I realized there was way more going on than just a big fish.  As I read Esther I realized there was more to the story than a poor girl who gets to be princess.  Even as I studied the Gospels, I gained a better understanding of why Jesus had to die on the cross.  The stories become completely different.  Its not just a story… Its so meaningful now.

As I was reading Luke the other day, I had a moment like this.  In chapter 8, there is a story of a man who asks Jesus to save his dying son, and at the same time there is a sick woman who touches Jesus to be healed.  Cool, huh?  What can we get from this story?  Jesus can heal sick people.

Well, yea… But that’s not even the half of it.

I was struck by the fact that as Jesus was walking, He was being pushed and crowded by a lot of people.  Everyone wanted to see and touch Jesus.  This wasn’t the first time He had performed miracles.  Yet when this one unclean, cast out women touched the hem of His robe He felt power go out of Him.  

“Who touched me?”

I’m glad I was not there for that one.  My tendency to sarcasm might have gotten me in trouble.  Everyone touched You, Jesus!!!

The disciples had my back.  They pointed out the same thing.

There were a few things that stuck out to me in this passage.  

First, the woman didn’t even have Jesus’ full attention.  She was creeping up behind Him.  As an unclean woman, she was risking everything to touch Jesus.  But in her shame and guilt, she did not want to ask Him for healing.  Really the woman did not want Him to see her at all.  And she was healed!

How much encouragement is that for us? “While we were sinners, Christ died for us.”  When we were rebellious in sin and distracted by everything else, we had Jesus’ full attention.  We were broken and sick, but instead of wanting Jesus to heal us and save us, we wanted to stay there.  We were not like the woman who approached Jesus.  He approached us and offered us healing. 

He showed her grace and mercy when she was so ashamed.  He asks us to confidently approach his throne.  he promises us to give us anything We ask for in His name.  We did nothing to deserve this freedom, but He expects us to walk in it.  Jesus does not desire us to sneak up to His throne and touch His robe.  He wants to welcome us in and embrace us.

Secondly, her sickness kept her set apart from the world.  Our sin keeps us set apart from Jesus.  When He healed her she receive a new life.  Her relationships were restored.  Everything that had been taken away from her, was given back.  That is what He does to us as well.  He gives us new life.

Thirdly,  What was Jarius thinking at this point?  He is a high ranking official.  He has importance.  And Jesus is making him wait until He finishes talking to this unclean woman.  In the mean time, his son dies.  How humbled would he have been.  But Jesus purpose was not to put him in his place necessarily.  It was to reveal more of His glory as He raised Jarius’s son back to life.  In that case, it was probably worth the wait.

Lastly, however, is the thing that bugged me most.  Jesus was in the crowd of people.  Everyone was pressing in on Him, but He felt the touch of one woman full of faith.  His power left Him at her touch.  What about all the other people touching Him?  

They were in the presence of the Savior.  All of them had hurts that could have been healed and sins that could have been forgiven.  They were watching Him, touching Him, and calling out to Him.  Why did they not experience His power?

So many people that I talk to on campus, experience this.  People dabble in religion or church.  They cling to the stories that they heard when their grandma took them to church as a child.  They call out to Him when life is hard, or they need help on a test.  

And the sad part is they think they are experiencing Jesus.  But all they are doing is sitting on the side lines.  Do they realize that there could be so much more?  If they did I don’t think they would be content with just what they have now.

But how will they know that there is more.  How will they know Jesus unless they experience Jesus first hand?  

That is where we come in.  We have to tell them.  It’s not ok to let people experience only part of Jesus.  We need to live in a way to reveal His glory and goodness.  His grace and compassion.  His worthiness.  It’s not ok to do “churchy” things and think that people will come to know Jesus.  We have to tell them!

I did nothing to deserve to experience Jesus’s power.  I didn’t even want it.  But I am so glad that someone loved me enough to point me to Him.  How can experience the fullness of His love and not want others to do the same?

“How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? And how can anyone preach unless they are sent? As it is written: “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!” Romans 10″14-15

There is a crowd around us looking for Jesus, but never feeling His power.  What are we going to do about it?

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