Monday, June 23, 2014

And, Again, Alleluia!

In the conclusion of my last post on this blog I wrote, “I will write, and I will trust.  Alleluia!”  Well, I haven’t written, posted anything in nearly three months.  Even though I said I’d write, I haven’t, BUT, I have trusted.  And, again, Alleluia!

There are two episodes in the life of Jesus intertwined in Mark 5 that reflect interesting expressions of trust/faith.  A bleeding woman acted in faith to just touch his robe through a crowd, and she was healed.  Jairus believed Jesus could lay his hands on his dying daughter and she’d be healed, but he had to come to Jairus’ house.  The woman pressed in.  She was healed, and Jesus said, “Daughter, your faith has made you well – be healed of your disease.”  Jairus was then told his daughter just died.  Jesus said to him, “Do not fear, only believe.”  This religious leader just witnessed a woman risking public stoning by reaching out in faith to touch a man in public while menstruating to be restored to health despite her own fear.  Jairus, look at what faith does in the face of fear.  Don’t fear.  Only believe.

Both the woman and Jairus are oppressed by social opposition to believe in what Jesus can do for them.  The woman is menstruating, but in a crowd she reaches out to touch Jesus’ clothing to be healed.  If she’s caught, legally, she can be executed.  Jairus was told in public his daughter was dead, and the mourners at his house accentuate the point.  Jesus accompanies him to the home to do what exactly?  She’s dead. 

The woman just tried to avoid the stigma and execution, and he affirms her faith, and she’s restored.  Jairus carries a lot with him because of his religious and assumed political authority in his community.  There were lots of opportunities for him to believe what they said to him (She’s dead!) or what they did by mourning openly at his home, but he literally had Jesus with him.

The woman who suffered for years went to Jesus.  Jairus took Jesus with him.

There is going to Jesus in an uncertain environment and believing or taking Jesus with you into a mourning or defeated environment and believing.  Be it going to him or taking him with you where you’re going, victory is had in believing, trusting in him where you find him or where you ask him to go.  They both experience his gracious power that makes things new in the woman and Jairus’ daughter.  This wonderful account of who Jesus displays himself to be for the sake of his loved ones thrills me still! 

April, our children, our family and me still believe in what is promised to us and our destiny as anointed instruments of God’s presence and His kingdom on Sand Mountain.  Though it has been difficult at times to continue to trust that God has not abandoned us, we continue to believe.  Though we’ve suffered the passive aggressive behavior of acquaintances who wouldn’t say to us out loud we were stupid, we knew what they thought and carried on despite them.  Though we looked foolish in ministering to the suffering and risking any respectability we had left after leaving the United Methodist Church, we trusted the Lord’s voice and direction in our lives.  Though we offended friends by calling on them to trust what the Lord was telling us about them and to surrender their spiritual blindness, we trusted the Holy Spirit’s giftings in our lives to reveal abundant life in Jesus alone.  Though we’ve moved from Sand Mountain to live with family in Anniston, we believe and are not afraid of our current circumstances nor our future found in the right hand of the God of power and love.

We’ve spent years going to kneel at his feet and lifting our hands in praise and shouting his name in worship.  We’ve gone to Jesus, and we met him, and he’s given us a glorious life.  We will spend our lives telling the world how outrageously good God is.  We will accompany him and he will accompany us to wherever this journey leads to declare his mercy and glory in Jesus Christ.  As we go to him, we believe, and as we walk hand in hand with him, we believe.  What glorious things we’ll witness and tell!  We invite you to come with us.

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