An Inconvenient Interruption

The plan was starting to come together. Momentum was beginning to build and the path forward was becoming clear. There were still so many villages to visit and many, many people to set free. And then this happened.

Jesus and some of his disciples were making their way from one village to the next when up ahead on the road, a lonely figure appeared. At first it was difficult to tell who it was through the haze, but as they drew closer, they could see it was a man. He was dressed in ragged clothes and had scruffy, unkempt hair.

Hesitation

The disciples were cautious… hesitant to get too close… but the man kept coming towards them. Their worst fears were realized when they caught a whiff of rotting flesh. This man was a leper.

He was supposed to keep a distance of fifty paces and call out to warn any travelers on the road that he was unclean… but he did none of that. Instead, he came right up to Jesus and fell to his knees, and through cracked and ulcerated lips uttered the words, “If you are willing, you can make me clean.”

For a moment, the disciples were not sure how their master was going to react, but Jesus was deeply stirred by what he saw. What he did next caught all of them by surprise. He reached out and placed his hand on the man before him.

“I am willing. Be clean!”

At that very instant, the horrible skin disease that had plagued the man vanished… he was healed.

The Task At Hand

Jesus, conscious of the mission set before him of getting to as many towns and villages in Galilee as he could, so that everyone would have the opportunity to hear his Fathers good news, was quick to dismiss the man with these instructions;

Don’t tell anyone about this. Instead, go to the priest and let him examine you. Take along the offering required in the law of Moses for those who have been healed of leprosy. This will be a public testimony that you have been cleansed.

Mark 1:44 NLT

The man, unable to contain his joy at being made well, told anyone who would listen what had happened to him. The news spread throughout the region like wild fire and it became harder and harder for Jesus to enter into any village, on account of the vast number of people who were now seeking him out.

The plan to reach all of Galilee would have to wait, because it seemed as if all of Galilee was coming to him.


Take a moment to reflect on the story you have just read.
(sometimes it is helpful to read it again, slowly)

*Was there something in this story that you discovered—or thought about—for the first time?
*As you think about the story, what questions do you have? What do you wonder about?
*How might this story change your perspective / beliefs / behaviors?

I would love to hear what you are discovering as you think through these questions.
Comments are moderated to ensure they are relevant to the story and questions above.

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