Before the healing

I’m worn out. Sick. Tired. My heart races and mind is frustrated with the events swirling to no foreseeable end. How am I supposed to know which way to turn? Truth is clouded, and I am stuck. The space between us is magnified, leaving emptiness in its wake.

This is the reality for 10 people, as their sufferings and desperation unfolds for us in Luke 17.

As Jesus continued on toward Jerusalem, he reached the border between Galilee and Samaria. As he entered a village there, ten men with leprosy stood at a distance, crying out, “Jesus, Master, have mercy on us!”‭‭

Luke‬ ‭17:11-13

Ten men with leprosy stand outside, separated, tremendously suffering. As Jesus enters the village, those men stand at a distance and begin crying out — Jesus, have mercy on us!

Jesus had come to the village for a specific purpose. But God had also brought together events, even painful circumstances, for each of these 10 men to be standing there, ready to call out for mercy to the Only One who could give it.

Jesus, have mercy on me. Jesus, have mercy on us!

He looked at them and said, “Go show yourselves to the priests.”‭‭

Luke‬ ‭17:14‬a

Jesus looks at them. He acknowledges each one, as valuable, and worth His time and His healing power. However, in that moment, He doesn’t heal them. He gives them a command that doesn’t make sense or that gives resolution.

“Go and show yourselves to the priests.”

The reason a leper would go to the priest is to receive acknowledgment and proclamation of healing. But, these 10 men aren’t healed. By law they aren’t allowed to be anywhere near those who are clean and whole. How can they present themselves for examination by the priest if their bodies are still in decay? And yet, this man they call Master, answers their cry for mercy with this command – Go.

God calls us to step forward in faith and walk as though we are healed before we are actually healed.

As Jesus speaks, He is assuring these 10 of their healing and asking them to believe Him by doing what He says. God’s promise is true before it is fulfilled.

And as they went, they were cleansed of their leprosy.

‭‭Luke‬ ‭17:14‬b

As they go, they are healed. They receive the miracle God’s mercy has extended through the word of Jesus.

One of them, when he saw that he was healed, came back to Jesus, shouting, “Praise God!” He fell to the ground at Jesus’ feet, thanking him for what he had done. This man was a Samaritan.‭‭

Luke‬ ‭17:15-16‬

All 10 lepers are healed. All of them realize they were healed. One of them comes back. The other nine continue on to the priests for the official statement of their healing. One returns to The One who had healed him.

This time, though, the former leper doesn’t stand at a distance and call out to the One who had given him mercy. He rushes to Jesus and falls at His feet.

God’s healing isn’t only about curing our sickness – it’s about eliminating the space between us and Him.

God wants us as close to Him as possible, and He will do whatever is necessary to draw us near.

How then how should we live, how do we approach a world of anxiety, chaos, lies and separation?

Call out to Jesus! Ask Him for mercy, for direction, for how to even find the path forward. 

  • God, where are You commanding us to live in Your promise before it is fulfilled – before we can see it?
  • Where are You asking us to believe You?
  • Would you teach us how to gear all of our energy, thoughts and actions through that belief?

Jesus, show us how to step forward healed, even before we actually are.

It’s 2 weeks until Easter – Make the most of it!

Many of us have found ourselves with more time at home with our families than our schedules would have ever allowed before. We used to have activities every night, with homework squeezed in as we made a mad dash toward bedtime. Then we would wake up and do it all over again.

Suddenly life has been shaken, and our dinner table is a gathering place each night, filled with relaxed conversation. Margin exists for evening family walks, and, most importantly, unrushed time with the Lord.

Easter is in two weeks. And, it’s going to look different this year. There won’t be that traditional church service where everyone dresses up “because it’s Easter” and large egg hunts where kids find way too much candy and a slew of “perfect” family photos on social media.

Most of us will be in our living rooms.

Jesus will be, too.

What if this Easter, it’s about Jesus, and Jesus alone?

What if these short weeks before Easter we intentionally focused together as families on why Jesus came, and how Jesus lived, and the reason why He died?

What if this Easter, we rediscovered the hope that is ours and embrace the life He’s given us because HE IS ALIVE?

Each year, our family experiences a tradition that we call 2 Weeks 2 The Cross. When our children were very little, my husband and I determined we wanted to make the most of the time we have to pour into our family the truth of the Gospel. Christmas was always the flashy holiday, but what about Easter? Without the cross, our faith means nothing! We wanted to imprint on our children’s hearts the beauty of Christ’s sacrifice and the transformational power of the resurrection.

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So for the 14 days leading up to Easter, we focus on Scripture and family activities that lead us through Passion Week, those last days before the crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus. It has been adapted over the years as our children grew – but the emphasis has remained the same.

We look forward to this time all year! Even with our kids now at 13 and 10 years old, when I announced 2 Weeks 2 The Cross starts tomorrow, they cheered. 🙂 Why? Because time with each other focused on Jesus matters!

Here on this blog, each day’s emphasis, Scripture passage, and potential activities are archived, so that you can take this journey with your family, too. Check out 2 Weeks 2 The Cross here.

If activities aren’t your thing, focus on the Word. Read the passages together as a family, and ask these questions:

  • Who do we meet in these verses?
  • What happens? Describe the events in your own words.
  • How does Jesus show (that day’s theme)? For instance, how does Jesus show He wants to clean my heart on Day 2?
  • Why do you think God chose for these particular events to be recorded in the Bible for us to read today?
  • Pray and thank God for this Scripture and what it means for us personally.

Most of the activities are fairly simple, and you will likely have the materials you need. If not, be creative! The purpose is to spend time together as a family applying truths of God’s Word.

If two weeks seems daunting, try it! Many of us have more time than we did a month ago – put it to good use!

And, if you’d prefer focusing on a few of these leading up to Easter, here are our family favorites (though it’s very hard to choose just a few!):

Review these free resources, and make them your own! Adapt them to your family. The point is to experience Jesus together.

Make the most of these two weeks leading up to Easter. You may find that this Easter will be the one your family will treasure for years to come.

He is risen!

View all 2 Weeks 2 The Cross resources here: https://myeverydaygod.com/2-weeks-2-the-cross/