Monday, February 22, 2010

Centurion, widow, servant, son

Jesus was amazed by the faith of a Roman Centurion. The people who came on his behalf felt that he deserved Jesus's attention because he loved the Jewish people and built the synagogue. "So Jesus went with them. He was not far from the house when the centurion sent friends to say to him: "Lord, don't trouble yourself, for I do not deserve to have you come under my roof. That is why I did not even consider myself worthy to come to you. But say the word, and my servant will be healed. For I myself am a man under authority, with soldiers under me. I tell this one, 'Go,' and he goes; and that one, 'Come,' and he comes. I say to my servant, 'Do this,' and he does it." When Jesus heard this, he was amazed at him, and turning to the crowd following him, he said, "I tell you, I have not found such great faith even in Israel." Then the men who had been sent returned to the house and found the servant well."

Humility and faith came together in the heart of this centurion and that is what amazed God not the activity but the heart. He recognized the authority of one that he only knew by reputation. 
Jesus gave a widow back her son. "Soon afterward, Jesus went to a town called Nain, and his disciples and a large crowd went along with him. As he approached the town gate, a dead person was being carried out—the only son of his mother, and she was a widow. And a large crowd from the town was with her. When the Lord saw her, his heart went out to her and he said, "Don't cry." Then he went up and touched the coffin, and those carrying it stood still. He said, "Young man, I say to you, get up!" The dead man sat up and began to talk, and Jesus gave him back to his mother. They were all filled with awe and praised God. "A great prophet has appeared among us," they said. "God has come to help his people." This news about Jesus spread throughout Judea and the surrounding country."

Luke was putting together this story not to tell about the son, the widow, the centurion, the servant but to talk about Jesus and the impact on these communities as they were filled with awe and praised God. Jesus was defying the religious leaders of the day - the ones who should have been leading the people to the face of God were misleading them to focus on traditions and adding to laws, placing unnecessary burdens on them. They were missing it but the centurion got it. The widow received it. Can you imagine the impact on these households? This servant says, "I was dying." This son says, "I was dead". We have seen the hand of God - been ushered in to see the face of God. The Kingdom of God is at Hand. 

These verses from Luke 7 remind me as we approach Jake's next ("last major") surgery that we have seen the hand of God - been ushered in to see the face of God. And we continue to see it in big ways and in little ways. Today for me was a meeting with a man reminded me that all we have gone through continues to shape and direct where we are going - what we are doing. 

It has been 8 months since Jacob's accident. 8 months - wow. It is the first time that we have had to wait like this for a surgery. So thankful that we are so near to this date. Please continue to pray for a clean bill of health as we go tomorrow for all of his pre-op lab work. Please pray that we would continue to surrender our burden's to Christ and trust that He is fully in control - and fully present through this all. 

Peace and hope, 

Tom (daddy) 

Erica update: 
We are now a week into this nightmare. We have 7 more days of antibiotics and are hopeful that her heart and lungs are strong enough to hold on that long on an oscillator. Dialysis appears to be helping as she still receives transfusions but her platelets are up. She developed a secondary infection which they expect when you have so many tubes. The antibiotics for this new infection also appear to be working as her white blood count is dropping again. She tried to open her eyes today and we saw tears running down her face so we have so much hope that with your prayers and her tenacity she will make one more week. Thank you all for keeping us in your prayers and for donations you have made to help Erica. 
Our love, Eric and Bernadette

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