In the following account, Jesus shows us how to hear, see, and live in the present in order to activate the love of God.
“Who touched me?” Jesus asked.
Peter, a very practical man, thinking Jesus’ question is ridiculous, protests, “Master, we’ve got crowds of people on our hands. Dozens have touched you.”
Jesus, a very present man, is not deterred. “Someone touched me,” he insists. “I felt power discharging from me.”
Sure enough, Jesus was correct. After a few moments, the woman who had touched Jesus “realizing that she couldn’t remain hidden, came and knelt trembling before him. In front of all the people, she blurted out her story—why she touched him and how at that same moment she was healed.
“Jesus said, ‘Daughter, you took a risk trusting me, and now you’re healed and whole. Live well, live blessed!’” (Luke 8:47–48)
Besides crowd pressures, Jesus had ministry pressures too. At that moment, a little girl lay dying just down the street in her parents’ house and Jesus was going to help her. In spite of that emergency, Jesus stops to help this lady who touched him.
Imagine the anxious pressure for Jesus to ”get going” and heal the sick girl. Still, he stopped because of his inner awareness. And, thankfully, it all worked out. Both the lady and the girl were healed that day!
“God is a very present help in time of trouble.” (Psalm 46:1) Jesus believed that and tells us the two ways he became a “very present” man.
First, Jesus did only what his Father showed him. Jesus explains, “I’m telling you this straight. The Son can’t independently do a thing, only what he sees the Father doing. What the Father does, the Son does.” Jesus always watched for his Father’s way. We can too.
Second, Jesus spoke only as his Father taught him. He tells us, “I’m not making this up, but speaking only what the Father taught me.” And again, “I am in the Father and the Father is in me. The words that I speak to you aren’t mere words. I don’t just make them up on my own. The Father who resides in me crafts each word into a divine act.” (John 5:19; John 8:28; John 14:10) Jesus always listened to his Father’s words. We can too.
We be like Jesus, “very present.” Our hurting world, more than ever, needs us to listen and be aware of needs and hurts¾just like Jesus was. Jesus says we can do what he did, and even more.
Jesus promises, “The person who trusts me will not only do what I’m doing¾but even greater things.” (John 14:12)
This is exciting. Like Jesus, we can be “very present,” watching for the Father’s opportunities and listening for his words.
Believing, we will miss less, hear clearer, and see better. As we are walking along in a crowd of people—and everywhere else too—in our homes, at work, in our neighborhoods, and at our places of worship we will be empowered to help, heal and encourage effectively.
Very practical people may miss this. Very present people will see and do even greater things!
Giv’m Heaven!—John Parker
John Parker, is a pastor and teacher at Chowchilla Simple Church 10 AM Sundays at Carty Center, 609 W. Robertson Boulevard. For more call: (209) 564-7201 (Most Scripture passages adapted from The Message Bible).