Wednesday nights have a certain feel. They are the nights that a wonderfully odd assortment of people gather in our living room to share life together. Raleigh leads us in worship on our aging piano. In silence we listen to God together. We share what brings life and takes it away. For a short time we meditate on a passage from Luke, ask questions, share thoughts.
Coast Vinyard has been going through the gospel of Luke, piece by piece. Part of this week’s text was Luke 5:12-15, which we also read tonight. As I was listening to my dad’s familiar voice read these words, a sudden memory ran across my mind. This was the text I gave my first devotional on, when I was 11 years old.
I was a part of a quiz team in Fairgrove, Michigan, and we were going through the book of luke. My chapters to study were Luke 3 & 5. Each member was asked to give a short devotional at a quiz practice. We gathered in this tiny room in the church gym. The walls and floor were carpeted with the classic light multi-colored stain-hiding gray. We sat around an old rectangular wooden table, I opened up my Bible and gave a 5-7 minute talk about how Jesus was willing to touch the leper and heal him, even though he was an outcast. My quiz leader pipped in with, “And what is even more powerful is that he’s willing to reach out and heal us too”.
That was a little over 10 years ago. Who would have thought that a little girl with a 5 minute talk would now be a woman called into ministry.
I’ve been thinking about how we are the love of Christ to the world. Since Jesus is not phyiscally here, in a way that we can see in touch, we are called to be His hands and feet, His bride, the body of Christ, the Church.
It’s like we’re a bunch of little kids each given some finger paint. Jesus takes a little brush, paints our hands and whispers into our child-like eyes, “Here you go, go now and touch the world with my grace and love”.
How my life is changed by these handprints. And how equally life-changing it is to take my little hand, small words, hugs, smiles, art, phone calls, facebook chats, crazy ideas, true listening, and a heart full of love to you.
For the love of Christ and the people it comes through I am entirely thankful.