May grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord.

2 Peter 1: 2

 

This town, set in the state where it is with its place in a nation that is established in this harsh and broken world, can bring on some really hard days. There is just too much coming my way to actually understand it all; in fact, there is so much pain, suffering, and brokenness on a continual basis that my heart and my mind can’t hold any more. Yet, when I consider what Jesus saw, knew, and felt, I know that there is One who truly grasps the place where I am. Christ sees the devastated lives and feels the raw edge of loss. He walks the halls of the hospital and understands the fear. Jesus comes to the place where sadness and sorrow rule, and He brings love and comfort for oppressed and troubled spirits.

 

One of God’s greatest desires is to give people a deep and a true understanding of His grace. He wants us to realize that there is nothing that we have done and nothing that we are doing now that will keep Him from loving and from accepting us totally. We are people who have chosen to separate ourselves from His presence by our own actions; yet, God continually reaches out with His hand of healing and restoration. The grace that flows from the center of eternity enfolds our wounded hearts and protects us from further harm. The grace that our Savior, Jesus, gave His life to perfect brings understanding and comfort to these days of hard reality.

 

As I look on the face of Jesus, I see the heart of love that is the very center of God’s nature. He wants us to accept His grace and to live in the peace that such unrestricted acceptance brings. In Christ there is calm and there is clarity of thought. He tells me to stop trying to understand all of the whys and to just trust Him with the outcome. Christ wants to hear everything that my heart feels and all that is racing through my mind, and He tells me to trust Him with it all. He takes this churning sea of troubled and confused thoughts and feelings, and His Spirit provides the sort of deep peace that makes it possible to face another day knowing that God’s grace will enfold me into His love so that all of the emotional and mental clutter of this world are made orderly, and I am granted an eternal perspective on all that life will send my way.

 

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Taking her by the hand he said to her, “Talitha cumi,” which means, “Little girl, I say to you, arise.” And immediately the girl got up and began walking (for she was twelve years of age), and they were immediately overcome with amazement.

Mark 5: 41, 42

 

As Luke relates this same event he tells us that the girl’s father is named Jairus. This doesn’t matter much in the process of understanding the nature of what happens here, but it does make all of this very personal. This is not just some father; this is a real man named Jairus. This is not about an unknown little girl; we are witnessing an account of the return to life from death of a specific twelve-year-old daughter of one real man. This is all very personal. Nothing that transpires is for the show of it. Jesus turns from His journey and away from the apparent goals of the day in order to do what He was truly about. That is, He heals the sick. He cares for the most intimate and the most pressing of the needs of individual people.

 

There is sickness and disease loose in our land. All of us are sick and in need of healing. Everyone is headed along a path that leads to death. However, when we are born, that road is absolute, and it heads in the singular direction that is marked by an eternity of separation from God. In simple human words we call this final resting place Hell. Yet according to God’s Word, rest is not one of its characteristics. What Jesus gives to us is an answer to our distance from our God. He brings healing to this little girl, and He brings it to anyone who accepts Him as Savior and Lord. It was faith that saved Jairus’ daughter, and it is faith that heals us as well.

 

As I said, all of us are sick. Many, if not most, of us will face real physical, bodily attacks by disease and injury of various kinds. All of us encounter spiritual struggles and instances when sin overcomes our righteous intent. Christ is with us as He was with the girl, that is, personally and individually. He comes to our place of confinement, and He speaks words of healing and restoration. His Spirit comforts us along the way of the journey that we are on. Then, just like He did with Jairus’ precious child, Christ feeds us the sustaining food of His love, grace, and mercy.