Times of crisis; when everything seems lost…these are most often the times we reach out to a power greater than ourselves. These are the times we find ourselves on our knees, we find ourselves making bargins, begging, willing to consider miracles possible, if only they can be for us. I’ve been there myself.
Luke Chapter 17:11-19 tells the story of Jesus healing no less than ten leapers at one time on his way from Galilee to Jerusalem. As part of the process He sends them to a priest to be cleansed. In the end, only one comes back to thank him and give praise to God for this miracle. Sounds familiar doesn’t it? Because we are so often more like the nine who didn’t return, than the one who did. We ask God to do something for us, we promise we will go back to church, start praying again, be better…but no sooner do we get what we want, then we are right back to our old ways. We aren’t true to our word. We take God’s gifts and we forget to say thank you. We dull ourselves to the wonder of the miracle we have experienced.
Thankfully God is always faithful and he doesn’t hold a grudge. He knows even as we say those words, as we make those promises and bargins if we are going to be true, and He is ever hopeful that we will choose Him.
For some people the only relationship they have with God is one of asking. I don’t necessarily think that’s a bad thing. I think of it instead as simply a stop on their journey. God would rather you ask him for things than have nothing to do with him. And think about your children. When they are young all they do is ask for things. In fact when they are very young, when they are babies, they don’t just ask, they demand! Sometimes loudly. So if you are in a place where all you find yourself doing is asking God for things, that’s okay. But as you grow in your relationship and your faith, you will find yourself more like a teenager or a young adult, able to give thanks, to appreciate your blessings. And I think as you continue to grow you will eventually find yourself in a much more adult relationship, more like a parent or friend than a child. Able to give and listen and wait upon the Lord. You will find yourself becoming a servant; grateful to be useful, wanting to be used.
Jesus says to the the one who returns, “Rise and go; your faith has made you well.”
Part of faith is recognizing and giving thanks for our blessings, for the miracles God works in our lives. I feel as if Natalie Grant sums up how we should approach this story and our faith perfectly in her song “More than Anything” “Help me want the Healer more than the healing. Help me want the Savior more than the saving. Help me want the Giver more than the giving. Help me want you Jesus more than anything.”