12 While he was in one of the cities, there came a man full of leprosy. And when he saw Jesus, he fell on his face and begged him, “Lord, if you will, you can make me clean.” 13 And Jesus stretched out his hand and touched him, saying, “I will; be clean.” And immediately the leprosy left him. 14 And he charged him to tell no one, but “go and show yourself to the priest, and make an offering for your cleansing, as Moses commanded,for a proof to them.” 15 But now even more the report about him went abroad, and great crowds gathered to hear him and to be healed of their infirmities. 16 But he would withdraw to desolate places and pray.
Luke 5:12-16 Touch
Jesus touches the man. One life touches another life. This would have been a man who had been isolated by his disease for years. We seldom put people in an absolute quarantine now in the western world, but in a world without the medical knowledge that we have isolation was more often the remedy for a disease. Loneliness is a powerful motivator. Imagine if you think that someone can remove the stigma that keeps you removed from others. Imagine if finally, after years apart, you can be reunited with your family.
In contrast with this forced isolation is the kind of alone time that many of us crave. Jesus wanted time to himself so that he could draw near to God. His first relationship was the one he has with the Father. Notice that the locations themselves are lonely and isolated. We need a space in the day for as few distractions as possible so that our primary relationship can be enhanced. Then we will have the strength to reach out and touch the lives of others as Jesus did.
Jesus, give me the strength of character and the clarity of my call so that I may make time to be fully focused on you. Then help me to speak to those who need support and help me to touch those who need your healing.
- What did Jesus do for the leper?
- Why is the focus on Jesus’ wanting to do this healing?
- What do you think happened when Jesus was praying in desolate places?
- Where is your desolate place where your focus is sharpened?
- How does your life touch others for their good at the moment?