Do you need The Doctor?

The past several weeks, our house has been full of sickness. It seems that as soon as one round is drawing to a close, another one is on its heels. Or another person gets sick. Maybe you, too, can relate. 

Instead of seeing this as an opportunity to slow down, I have honestly been super frustrated, especially when plans just continue to get canceled and I find myself back in quarantine. 

And so this past weekend, I decided that instead of complaining, I should ask Jesus what He is trying to show me. 

One thing led to another and I found myself in Luke chapter 5. In this passage, Jesus was sharing a meal with his disciples, tax collectors, and “sinners” when the Pharisees came by and began to ask questions. 

In verse 31, Jesus responds.

 “Healthy people don’t need a doctor- sick people do. I have come to call not those who think they are righteous, but those who know they are sinners and need to repent.”

There are countless lessons to be learned from this verse alone. Although, today I want to start with a view from the pews. 

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Church Pews

Let’s first start with the Pharisees.​​ The word “Pharisee” itself means “separated one”. 

So these Jewish men were fiercely devoted to the law as they meticulously followed all the traditions and religious ceremonies and probably could recite the scriptures forward and backwards and their outward appearance sure looked good. Although even though they could follow everything to a “T”, their hearts were far from God. 

They also believed that all people except them were separated from the love of God. Therefore, they separated themselves from everything they thought was unholy (including people). 

So then picture Jesus entering the scene. He is teaching and performing miracles and also reciting the scriptures but also interacting with people from all walks of life. They just couldn’t understand. They were still stuck on what things looked like on the surface. 

It is easy to judge these men and think, “How could they…?”

But then God asked me, “Hey, Alisha, what about you?” 

What about your ugly heart and pride even in the church pew? 

How often do you say “I’m fine” with that painted surface smile, yet your life and rotting heart tell a different story?” 

Maybe it’s not just me… 

But folks today I pose, What if you and I decide to do things differently? 

Instead of hiding our brokenness and sicknesses behind our own striving, religious righteousness or roles, what if we went to the foot of the cross and let Jesus, The Great Physician, The Healer, The Redeemer, The Restorer of all things, meet us where we are? 

This is not an excuse for acting as we please. 

Rather, it is a bold plea to leave the pressure of trying to save our face and reputation by keeping things hidden from people and actually embrace the depth of our need to be healed and set free by our Savior.

God knows everything we are facing. Yet, just like with calling or messaging to make a doctor’s appointment, we must take the first step in asking, which leads me to my second point. 

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The Courage to Ask

If you are anything like me, asking for help is hard. It doesn’t matter if I am super sick and in need of a prescription. Or if I am struggling through some relationship issues and need advice from a friend. Or even when I am scared and beat up from this world and am in need of a hug and someone to listen. 

This whole not asking thing gets me into trouble OFTEN. Let me say that again, OFTEN. (Praise Jesus that He is working on me in this area) But I still try to be this stubborn, independent woman who has everything together… Which can work fine and dandy until I am literally falling apart and sobbing without even a clue to what is going on in my heart. 

So each time I get to this place, my counselor will often ask a simple question, “Why didn’t you ask for help sooner?”

You see friend, God did not mean for us to do life alone. That’s why He saw fit to create Adam AND Eve in the Garden. 

But the enemy tries to taunt you and harass you and make you believe you are the only one. The shame and the guilt and your effort to not be a bother…  

I hear you. I really do. But have you ever shared something and the most unexpected words “Me too” come flying back at you? 

No matter what you have walked through, past, present or future… No matter the twisted circumstances or sequence of events… I promise there is someone who can relate to you. And even if they do not understand every single detail, they can at least listen. 

Of course, there are people who do not listen well and you may have to weed through people to find your tribe. Still I promise there is freedom that comes when things are spoken out loud and shared from even those raw parts. 

The other and more beautiful thing is our Heavenly Father wants to hear from you. 

Yes, He is the all powerful, all knowing God and already knows all of your thoughts and feelings.

Although the whole reason that Jesus came into this world as a humble baby and lived a sinless life of 33 years, died a wretched death on the cross and then rose 3 days later is because He longs to bridge the gap and build a relationship with you. 

But beloved, He can’t help you if you don’t ask. 

So instead of avoiding the call or appointment altogether, it’s time to turn on the light above the examining table and pull out the stethoscope and let The Doctor examine your heart. For He not only wants to bring you healing, but all those around you who are rotting too, which leads to my last lesson. 

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Will YOU walk where He walked? 

As I mentioned in my previous post, I have gone through several jobs these past 6 months or so. Some places were “neat and tidy” with people looking like me. Places I was comfortable and things were predictable. 

While there have been other places I find myself, including my current job, which is filled with broken, hurting people and their children going through such dark, desperate circumstances I didn’t know existed.

Don’t get me wrong. It is challenging. But I am so grateful that the playing field is being leveled and my eyes are being opened even when there are gunshots down the street.

Likewise, I can imagine as Jesus walked the streets and ate with people described in this text, there were places He would rather not go. It was uncomfortable and dirty and full of disease. Conversations He would have rather not had. 

Although He saw beyond it all- To each person and their hearts.

And above all, His Father’s plan for them was greater than any temporary circumstance. He was more concerned about their ETERNITY. 

Folks, can you say the same thing? 

Will you walk where Jesus walked?

Whether there is visible sickness or not?

Whether you know their story or not?

Whether they are from the same area, race, or gender, or not?

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Each of us were formed in God’s image and so it’s time that we start operating from that perspective. 

It’s not about pointing our finger saying that him or her needs a doctor.

We are all sick at the heart from sin and the only answer is The Great Physician.

For once you see the power of what He can do for you, you will overflow to share Him and His Love with others, too.