Thursday, April 20, 2017

Healing the Hurting - Martin Wiles

The crowds asked, “What should we do?” John replied, “If you have two shirts, give one to the poor. If you have food, share it with those who are hungry.” Luke 3:10-11 NLT

God brought the saying to my mind; I never imagined anything would come of it. 

Bimonthly, I change the saying on the sign in front of the church I pastor. Since I tire of trying to find unique sayings—and since we didn’t have anything special happening to advertise, I try to listen to God’s still small voice. “Hurting people find healing here” came to mind. Appropriate, I thought. After all, churches should be places where anyone can come for emotional, spiritual, and even physical healing.

A couple in our church who own a construction company had been remodeling our Sunday school area and feverishly trying to finish it before our annual Vacation Bible School. As they worked late one night, a stranger banged on the door. Wary at first to let him in since the stench of alcohol surrounded him, they eventually decided to open the door. He wanted nothing but to talk. "You may have saved my life," he said later when he left. 

Hundreds of years had passed since anyone had heard from a prophet of God. Then John the Baptist emerged from the wilderness. Not the kind of person you’d think God would send with an important message, but, then again, God often operates outside of the box. After destroying their trust in their family heritage for salvation, John hears them ask what they should do. Share with others was his answer. This would show love. Jesus parroted John’s message. 

As God’s representative, I must share His love with others. 

The only way I can do this is through tangible acts that touch their lives. Even those incapacitated by health ailments can carry on an active intercessory prayer ministry. Others acts might include supporting an orphaned child, encouraging missionaries serving overseas in dangerous areas, carrying meals to shut-ins, or teaching in a local church. 

Opportunities abound, but healing the hurting is a mandate we can’t ignore. 

Through acts of love, I validate my relationship with Christ to myself and others. When they see love in action, they will be more likely to trust the Savior I serve. 

Think of one way you can help heal those who are hurting.

Prayer: Father, motivate us to reach out in love to those who are hurting.

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