My heart is a bit heavy tonight.
A sweet acquaintance of mine has a COVID-19 positive stepfather in the ICU, where he has been for several days.
He is elderly and has heart problems.
He isn’t doing well, and the next step is the ventilator. He has declined being put on the ventilator because “he wants to save it for someone younger and more in need”.
Now if that doesn’t give you huge respect and admiration for the selflessness of this man, I don’t know what to say.
The world needs more men like him. What a great loss his passing will be.
In light of that, I’d like to start in verse 11 of chapter 17. Jesus healed 10 men physically, but only 1 received the greater gift.
“Now on his way to Jerusalem, Jesus traveled along the border between Samaria and Galilee. As he was going into a village, ten men who had leprosy met him.
They stood at a distance and called out in a loud voice, “Jesus, Master, have pity on us!” When he saw them, he said, “Go, show yourselves to the priests.” And as they went, they were cleansed.”
Luke 17:11-14 NIV
They never reached the priests. They were healed on the way there. Simply their obedience was enough to heal their bodies.
However, Christ always asks us for a deeper understanding of his love. He wants that personal, intimate relationship.
“One of them, when he saw he was healed, came back, praising God in a loud voice. He threw himself at Jesus’ feet and thanked him—and he was a Samaritan.
Jesus asked, “Were not all ten cleansed? Where are the other nine? Has no one returned to give praise to God except this foreigner?”
Then he said to him, “Rise and go; your faith has made you well.””
Luke 17:15-19 NIV
Again, the only person who sought him out was not one of “God’s chosen people”.
As a reward for the man’s heart – full of love and thankfulness – Jesus “made him well”.
He not only cleansed the man physically, he made him whole spiritually. That’s the most important thing. Any of those men could have died in an accident that very night.
The physical healing isn’t the most important thing we get from God.
The spiritual connection is the one that matters eternally.
This stepfather that I mentioned in the beginning understands life. He’s ready to meet God and is choosing to give another the opportunity to meet God as well, before they leave this earth.
I can’t imagine the pain the family is going through.
But at the same time, how proud can you be of such a giving soul? If we could all be as caring and selfless, this world would be a much more beautiful place.
Heaven is our final destination.
I will look forward to meeting this man there.