Disapproved and Removed
38 Jesus left the synagogue and went to the home of Simon. Now Simon’s mother-in-law was suffering from a high fever, and they asked Jesus to help her. 39 So he bent over her and rebuked the fever, and it left her. She got up at once and began to wait on them. Luke 4:38-39
If you didn't know this about me, I am the spouse of a person with a chronic illness. It is difficult to even write that sentence, let alone fully accept that reality for my bride. As we learn to live with the throws of Relapsing Remitting Multiple Sclerosis, I gravitate to verses like these where Jesus performs the action I would quickly request of him if he walked into the room.
I am sure there is a personal need or request we all could place in God's ear to have him come upon us or others and to disapprove and remove some affliction from them. It is a very common and practical reality that we live into as a fallen race awaiting the return of our Lord. It is also a very practical step we can take as we look at the question asked by Simon and his family when they sought to remove the suffering from their mother.
We must consider that these miracle teaches us that it isn't only the requests we have that God hears or responds to. It is also of those who intercede and petition on our behalf. This should encourage us to not stop praying and pursuing God to come over those who are afflicted with a anticipation that he actually disapproves of its presence as we do and unlike us, he has the power to remove it.
I take great comfort that Jesus rebuked the fever. That God doesn't take delight in our suffering or is apathetic to it. In fact he is the opposite and shows his mercy and compassion over us. That action of Christ coming over I feel is significant. God is not distant from us, but is seeking for us to take refuge in his presence and through what or who he provides to endure the suffering until restoration takes shape are signs of his love. Whether it is by his divine hand, the miracle of medicine, or when we arrive in his presence in paradise, we will encounter his mercy.
I consider my late friend who lost his battle to Pancreatic Cancer last year. He gave me and his family the firm foundation that if the disease took his breath, his body would be redeemed and fully restored immediately following. This is difficult to live with as many of us know such sufferings that are over us or at distance of a few degrees of separation. Regardless, we can appreciate the nature of our God is not to be distant, apathetic, or separate from us in the throws of our suffering or of those who matter to us. May we on this Wonder Wednesday, draw a deeper breath of thanksgiving for God's presence that we can invite to those who we know need his touch. Whether it is in their mind, their body, or in the depravation of their souls. May Jesus find us just as passionate and inciting his great love for their welfare.
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