“And it happened when He was in a certain city, that behold, a man who was full of leprosy saw Jesus; and he fell on his face and implored Him, saying, “Lord, if You are willing, You can make me clean.” Then He put out His hand and touched him, saying, “I am willing; be cleansed.” Immediately the leprosy left him. And He charged him to tell no one, “But go and show yourself to the priest, and make an offering for your cleansing, as a testimony to them, just as Moses commanded.” However, the report went around concerning Him all the more; and great multitudes came together to hear, and to be healed by Him of their infirmities.” Luke 5:12-15
If this was on YouTube, it undoubtedly would go viral. You would share this on FaceBook. #Jesus would trend on Twitter. How many views would it generate? A great multitude? Christ healed a man of leprosy, even if you don’t understand the rest of these things, you know this is a miracle . And you know it’s kind-of-a-Big-Deal!
But, of course neither the leper nor any who witnessed the events that day had a GoPro camera. As a matter of fact, Jesus told the leper ‘to tell no one’. Keep it to yourself. Huh? This is completely contrary to our culture. If that isn’t scandalous enough for you, check out what Jesus did next: “So He Himself often withdrew into the wilderness and prayed.” Luke 5:16
“This,” we would say, “is the perfect chance to show everyone your power! Jesus, you simply must display all these wonderful things so everyone can follow you. You gotta heal more. Teach more. Miracle more!” That’s what we would do. At the height of popularity, we would get an agent and sponsors and sign a book deal with an option to make a feature film.
However, Jesus wasn’t concerned about popularity or fulfilling the world’s agenda. He was all about His Father’s will. How precious is His example! Notice that beautiful adverb in verse 16: OFTEN. Jesus often withdrew into the wilderness and prayed. We are not Him, so following His example requires wisdom and discernment about our own habits.
“He (Jesus) had an infinite job to do and only three and a half years to accomplish it. Yet His pace, measured and slow, was not forced. He did not strong-arm His way into people’s hearts, and He did not use a fast-bake method to mentor His disciples.” 1
Do we have busier schedules than Jesus? We often overestimate the importance of our plans. We try to squish so many activities into a day. Not all are necessarily bad things. But what is The Best Thing? What is God’s best for us? What is His design and plan for our lives? How will we ever know if the distractions of daily life consume all of our time and attention?
- Do you have time to seek God’s will in your life?
- Think about what occupies your time. This week, keep a record of how you spend your days. Then ask yourself these questions: Am I concerned primarily with making money or entertaining myself? Am I lazy?
- WARNING! When we evaluate our time, we may see it’s filled with a lot of garbage, worldliness and compromise. An honest assessment may reveal a lot of waste. Get ready, maybe it’s time to take out the trash.
Mark 1:35, Matthew 14:23, Luke 6:12