In the Crowd
by Sharon Milan
...but the crowds learned about it and followed him. He welcomed them and spoke to them about the Kingdom of God, and healed those who needed healing. (Luke 9:11)
Crowds are usually something I try to avoid, I simply like my space. You will not find me the day after Thanksgiving at 5:00 a.m., pushing my way through the crowd to possibly get the "best deal." There is no advertisement...no sale, good enough to cause me to rush in. Yet when I read in Luke about Jesus and His precious disciples trying to withdraw to Bethsaida it says the crowds "learned about it and followed him." When I read this I am right there! If I had heard the verbal advertisements about Jesus, realized He was possibly the "best deal," I would have grabbed my son and pushed our way into the crowd. Why? My son needs healing -- healing from Autism. Scripture clearly says he "healed those who needed healing." Right? So this is one crowd I would have rushed to be in.
Obviously I was not there that day so very long ago; but I am in that crowd, none-the-less. I am in the crowd of those praying, the crowds of moms and dads crying out, "Hey, what about our child...heal our child, please...we have followed you here...we have waited so long...we truly believe you alone can heal him."
Now, I picture myself back in that literal crowd in Luke. I begin to wonder...were there other parents there -- besides those rejoicing -- parents that day saying, "Hey, what about our child?" Or perhaps they were aching for their own healing. Yet God's Word says that those needing healing were healed. Would everyone in the crowd that day agree? I wonder. I stand in the road now realizing it is not about healing, it is about purpose. We each come into this world with one purpose; that being, to glorify God. I look around the crowd and it becomes clearer to me, that those whom He heals He does so for His glory and those whom He chooses not to heal will still glorify God in their "not-healed" state. Could it be my son does not need healing to fulfill God's purpose in his life?
God's work in and through our son's life has already been so evident on many occasions. This has been done not despite his Autism, but because it is a tool in the hand of his Creator. His journey continues to cause him to b more like Christ all the time, though he himself does not see it. Our son often feels rejected and not understood, lonely and different as one carrying a heavy load that others cannot comprehend. I have no doubt that these are feelings fully understood by Christ Jesus, who carried His own heavy load. Now do not get me wrong, I will still pray for my son to be healed, but only in accordance with God's perfect plan and His will. Jesus Himself has even given us that example. Father, if you are willing, take this cup from me; yet not my will, but yours be done. (Luke 22:42.)
My son carries the cup of Autism and I help as best I can to carry it when it seems too heavy for him; but mostly I encourage him with the truth that God has created him for a specify purpose. Perhaps you are carrying a cup too...perhaps you are in that crowd, pushing in desperation for that healing, finding comfort in the truth of God's Word, His love and His plan. Do put yourself in the crowd, but push for His will and purpose to be accomplished. He really is the "best deal." And, I'll see you in the crowd.
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Thank you, Sharon, for letting me share this devotional with my readers.