Friday, April 24, 2009

~Healer~By James McDonald

“The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim liberty to the captives and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed.” Luke 4:18

Only a couple times in Scripture do we learn what Jesus is like from Jesus Himself. One day early in His ministry, Luke 4:18 tells us that Jesus passed through Nazareth, His hometown, “and as was His custom, He went to the synagogue on the Sabbath day, and He stood up to read.” On the Scripture schedule that day was Isaiah 61:1-3. After He read it, He sat down saying, “Today this Scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing.” In other words, Did you recognize Me? Isaiah is talking about My ministry!

In one sentence the Lord describes His mission as “to help those who hurt.” He has set His heart on three kinds of people:

“To bring good news to the afflicted;
He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted,
To proclaim liberty to captives and freedom to prisoners.”

The first people Jesus helps are the afflicted. He brings good news to those who are poor in spirit, those who are willing to admit that they’re broken. You cannot have what Christ offers unless you admit your need—not just for salvation, but for sustaining grace and abiding faith. Just because we’ve been to the cross doesn’t mean we don’t need to lean hard on the Lord. When we do, we receive grace in even greater measure.

The next group Jesus tells us He runs to heal are the brokenhearted. That word describes people who have been hammered by a devastating blow. Perhaps a difficult circumstance has deeply wounded you. Is there a profound sadness over your life because of a tragedy in your past? Christ came to bind up your heart like a doctor tends a broken leg. He brings comfort to a place beyond your ability to soothe.

Finally, Jesus sets the captives free. Do you know firsthand the frustration and defeat of slavery to sin? Despite your best effort, do you wonder if a certain sin will ever be gone from your life? What you need is the freedom Jesus brings when He breaks that sin cycle. That is what He came into this world to do.

When Jesus described His ministry, He called Himself “the Healer.” Have you experienced this tender ministry from God’s hand? Has Christ healed hurts from your past? Have you seen Him take a formerly consuming pain and melt it away? I know thousands of people who have experienced physical, emotional, and spiritual restoration in places they thought never could heal. That’s something only God could do. I’ve experienced that; have you?

Is your heart open to the Lord’s healing? Have you exhausted your own resources? If you’re ready for the Great Physician’s healing hand, you only need to ask. Then look over your shoulder and see Him running your way. His mission is to help those who hurt.

There have been many times in the last 17 months where we have waited for God to show us great things. Don't get me wrong because we have been thrilled to hear the word, "stable." There has only been 1 time where there has been a small amount of growth, which is amazing, but I have to tell you to hear Jan's results from this latest MRI as the tumor being "lighter" and "smaller" is impossible to describe. It gives me even more HOPE that she will beat this nasty cancer.

Please continue to pray for continued results like we saw this week!



Laurie Ann said...

Awesome devotion! Such powerful words about our Savior. He truly does heal and I pray he does so for Jan and for Jimmy!

Denise said...

Such a beautiful post sweetie, my prayers continue. I love you.

Christina said...

Great post leading up to how you've seen God working in Jan's life. I am very happy for Jan and will continue to pray for her healing.

Erica said...

Hey girl,
I've missed you!
I thought that I was following your blog, but realized that I wasn't on your list. Now I will get your updates on a regular basis. So glad to hear about Jan.
Hope you are doing well!