Matthew 8:1-4Impossible prayers, I have them, don't you? Some have to do with healing, but others are simply for my family or a career goal. Yesterday I confided to my husband about one prayer I had for our daughter and he laughed out loud. "That's not going to happen!" he snorted. Usually he has more faith in me, but in this case, I agreed with him.
But isn't Jesus bigger than that?
It's not that I don't think Jesus is able, I've experienced too many miracles. I am not sure it's in His plan. Is He willing? That is exactly the question of the leper in Matthew 8.
Lepers were considered unclean and contagious. They stayed far away from crowds and if anyone approached them, they shouted a warning, "Unclean! Unclean!" They lived alone, avoided public places, were never touched for fear of contamination. For a leper to approach Jesus with a crowd around Him would have taken great courage. Or maybe just great desperation?
When He had come down from the mountain, great multitudes followed Him. And behold, a leper came and worshiped Him, saying, “Lord, if You are willing, You can make me clean.”
Then Jesus put out His hand and touched him, saying, “I am willing; be cleansed.”
The leper knows several things:
- Jesus is Lord, because he worships Him.
- Jesus is approachable and compassionate, because he approaches Him
- Jesus is able to heal him, because he asks Him.
I spend too much time wondering if Jesus is willing and not enough time presenting my requests to Jesus, even impossible, crazy, laugh-out-loud requests. Thank God, He does not grant all my requests, but sifts them through His wisdom and does what He knows is best. But yet like a loving father, God wants us to throw all caution to the wind and to approach Him with with every need, every desire.
This is what I must do, Beloved, and trust You with results. You can be trusted! You have demonstrated that over and over. Help me to be fearless as the leper was, and let me trust You even when you have other, better plans for me and my family.
Immediately his leprosy was cleansed. And Jesus said to him, “See that you tell no one; but go your way, show yourself to the priest, and offer the gift that Moses commanded, as a testimony to them.”