Have you ever tripped over an open dishwasher? I have. It’s painful. My mother did it the other day and she has a pretty big lump on her ankle and a monster…and I mean monster…bruise on her chest where the upper rack broke her fall. My best friend is in treatment for stage four cancer. I spent several hours with a friend who has pneumonia and one of my son’s close friends had emergency brain surgery this week. The flu this season is worse than it’s been in a decade here and is expected to last into summer. Everywhere I turn, I see the need for physical healing right now. Scripture is littered with accounts of Jesus physically healing those with lameness, blindness, sicknesses, demon possession, leprosy and other diseases.
And when Jesus entered Peter’s house, he saw his mother-in-law lying sick with a fever. He touched her hand, and the fever left her, and she rose and began to serve him. That evening they brought to him many who were oppressed by demons, and he cast out the spirits with a word and healed all who were sick. This was to fulfill what was spoken by the prophet Isaiah: “He took our illnesses and bore our diseases.” (Matthew 8:14-17)
And rising very early in the morning, while it was still dark, he departed and went out to a desolate place, and there he prayed. And Simon and those who were with him searched for him, and they found him and said to him, “Everyone is looking for you.” And he said to them, “Let us go on to the next towns, that I may preach there also, for that is why I came out.” (Mark 1:35-38)
Physical healing is a wonderful thing. But, spiritual healing is more important. He may choose to heal us physically. But, the healing we all need more is spiritual. Jesus healed many one night, but the next morning, when many more were looking for him, he suggested they get back to what he really came for…spiritual healing.
We all went astray like sheep;
we all have turned to our own way;
and the Lord has punished him
for the iniquity of us all. (Isaiah 53:6)
so that what was spoken through the prophet Isaiah might be fulfilled:
He himself took our weaknesses
and carried our diseases. (Matthew 8:17)
It’s much less obvious than our need for physical healing, but you and I both need spiritual healing. Jesus has done that for us.
But he was pierced for our transgressions;
he was crushed for our iniquities;
upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace,
and with his wounds we are healed. (Isaiah 53:5)
It’s very easy to get wrapped up in our physical needs and be less concerned about our spiritual needs. Hear me–physical needs are important. I will not minimize that reality. There are too many people around me with serious physical needs right now to think otherwise. But, even Jesus prioritized spiritual healing.
- When you think about your own needs, what do you tend to prioritize?
- What physical healing do you need right now?
- What spiritual healing do you need right now?
- How can you learn to focus on the eternal rather than the temporary?
Give me a heart full of gratitude for the spiritual healing you’ve given me. Help me value the eternal over the temporary. Let me point others toward the reality of physical healing.
I love you. Amen.
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