I am always find myself interested in Jesus’ stories of healing or “sending out demons.” These are stories, when reading the Bible, that cause me to stop, to break or to pause. The interaction that Jesus has with the man in Mark 1:21-25 is one of these interesting stories. This healing occurs directly after Jesus calls the disciples. Could you imagine being these disciples? First day on the job, and there is a demon-possessed man. It would be like having to perform open-heart surgery on your first day in the hospital. Could it get any worse than this?
Here’s what I find particularly amazing about Jesus: Jesus doesn’t come into this first situation and say, “Let me tell you all about who I am.” Jesus’ first action is to meet this man directly where he is and help him. When I read passages like this, I say, what can I learn from Jesus?
This week I went before the Board of Ordained Ministry in the United Methodist Church. One of the committees reminded me of why I so deeply love our denomination and our church. We are a servant-based denomination. I am called to servant-based ministry. To be like Jesus is to serve people (physically, emotionally, spiritually) where they are. This church is so committed and gifted in the area of servanthood.
During my first year of college, I was invited to participate in the Fellowship of Christian Athletes. I loved to play Ultimate Frisbee, and FCA played Ultimate every Friday. The person who invited me brought me into a community that was fun and did things that I liked to do. It was there that I rekindled my love for God. It was an amazing example of how someone could come to me where I was at that time and invite me to participate.
Who might God be calling you to serve today?