Last night I had a difficult time sleeping, and at three in the morning as I was about to give myself a stern lecture in regards to drinking coffee at 9:45pm, I thought it better to open my Bible instead.
I pulled back the cover of my fragile, maroon colored treasure with the thin, crinkled pages and read words I have encountered on many occasions. However, this time was different. This time the words beckoned me somehow. I had no idea how much I needed to hear what was written.
In Mark chapter one we learn about Jesus cleansing a leper. Other times, when I’ve read the story, I became caught up in the miracle awarded to the man. Not this time. Something about the exchange in conversation between Jesus and the leper captured me.
Now a leper came to Him imploring Him, kneeling down to Him and saying to Him. “If You are willing, You can make me clean.” Then Jesus, moved with compassion, stretched out His hand and touched him, and said to him, “I am willing; be cleansed.”
Leprosy included a variety of skin diseases and the people who wore the wounds of this awful illness usually found themselves outcasts, unwanted, and swept aside like garbage.
The diseased man approached Jesus on his knees and simply spoke, “If you are willing…”
And Jesus was willing.
I know that not every disease is healed, not every scary situation we face ends wrapped in a pretty package with a bow on top, and I’m painfully aware that not everything we think should be His will for our lives actually is. But here’s something else I know:
I know that Jesus loves.
I know that Jesus cares.
I know that Jesus died for our eternities without ever being asked by the ones who would benefit from His wounds. And He did it because He was willing.
I understand, not everything is as simple as kneeling and receiving, but I’m 100% certain that kneeling in faith regardless of the outcome pleases God and seals our future in eternity free from the burdens of this life. The word of God tells me that without faith it’s impossible to please Him. (See Hebrews 11:6) So, friend, I choose faith.
Jesus’ response to this leprous man indicates so much more than the immediate healing he received. Jesus was moved with compassion, stretched out His hand and told Him He was willing.
Two thousand years ago, Jesus did for us what He did for that faith-filled leper. He was moved with compassion, stretched out His hands, and was willing to give His life for ours. He healed our leprous sin-filled lives and bought us with His shed blood.
I don’t know if this moves you at all, but it astounds me.
He is a willing God and nothing is impossible with Him.
It’s something to think about, isn’t it?