30 Days in Gennesaret: Day 21 Puzzles

When we received confirmation from the genetics clinic, of a diagnosis for our seven year old daughter’s disability, our other children were 11, 13 and 14. They had some questions: “What does this mean?” “Well…if Jesus healed her, would he change everything?”

Puzzles

Where are the disciples? Has anyone seen Thaddeus…Andrew, James, John

? Did any come with leprosy. Who brought them? After how many seasons in quarantine??

? Did some wait sun-up to sun-down and into first light, like refugees, lined up with diseases like displacement and poverty, the adverse experience of terror

? Did Matthew really mean all: he was a numbers keeper, you know:

     “soon the people were bringing all their sick to be healed and all who touched him were healed.”

? Was there a panic, what if I can’t get there in time?

? Did anyone get sunburned, lying in the marketplace.

? What ointment did they have

? Who carried cups of water

https://water.cc/

? What questions did the children ask  ? What answers were they given

? Did people talk to the beggars – or were they considered ‘unclean’ And at the end of the day?

? Did anyone, listening to the stories, sneak away to the harbor,  freshly healed—to attempt walking on water. This I would really like to know…

? Were some taken aback at transformations; others’ ills completely unknown. Not just acquaintances, but family members, friends…

? Were the newly healed, newly clothed. By what method?

I will greatly rejoice in the Lord;
my soul shall exult in my God,
for he has clothed me with the garments of salvation;
he has covered me with the robe of righteousness,
as a bridegroom decks himself like a priest with a beautiful headdress,
and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels. Isaiah 61:10 ESV

? what did healing look like. The way things were before, or did God’s kingdom coming in the Healer Jesus bring a new normal

? did old scars go away – the jagged lines disappear

? Does Jesus see me

? Who is He – really…………………………………………………who will I say that He is?

jfig     4/2020

 

“Matthew 14:34 (NLT) – After they had crossed the.” Blue Letter Bible. Web. 24 Apr, 2020. <https://www.blueletterbible.org/nlt/mat/14/34/s_943034&gt;.

Scripture quotations marked (NLT) are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2007. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

“Isaiah 61:10 (ESV) – I will greatly rejoice in.” Blue Letter Bible. Web. 24 Apr, 2020. <https://www.blueletterbible.org/esv/isa/61/10/s_740010&gt;.

Scripture quotations are from the Holy Bible, English Standard Version, copyright © 2001, 2007, 2011, 2016 by Crossway Bibles, a division of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved

One response that you could make to this post, is to share your heart’s awareness of  the names of organizations/nonprofits that you feel are carrying out the healing ministry of Jesus Christ. Thanks…j

30 Days in Gennesaret: Day 13, My Friend Alex

And wherever he went—into villages, towns or countryside—they placed the sick in the marketplaces. They begged him to let them touch even the edge of his cloak, and all who touched it were healed.

“Mark 6:56 (NIV) – And wherever he went into villages.” Blue Letter Bible. Web. 14 Apr, 2020. <https://www.blueletterbible.org/niv/mar/6/56/p1/s_963056&gt;.

 

My Friend Alex

My friend Alex

strolls the marketplace

perusing.

She has a keen eye for color.

Vivid humanity

invites her back the next day.

 

My friend Alex

surveys the market

appraising.

Shades in justice catch her eye.

She leaves

paint swatches in hand.

 

My friend Alex

hurries to the market – determined.

“Examine these hues

marked disparity…”

Home…market

Something is amiss.

 

My friend Alex

storms the market:

“Why?”   “How long, O Lord?”

“Where is equitable?”

Day after day

she carries questions on the palette of her heart.

 

My friend Alex

‘moves’ to the market.

Study the fabric:

this Jesus garment.

It takes hours,

often days.

 

Teacher, What does it cost

to allow one’s heart to be broken?”

 

jfig   2/2020

 

What questions is Jesus writing on the palette of your heart? Is there something to which he is calling your attention? 

 

30 Days in Gennesaret: Brokenness Day 3

 

Mark 6:53-56 When they had crossed over, they landed at Gennesaret and anchored there. As soon as they got out of the boat, people recognized Jesus. They ran throughout the whole region and carried the sick on mats to wherever the heard he was. And wherever he went – into villages, towns or countryside – they placed the sick in the marketplaces. They begged him to let them touch even the edge of his cloak, and all who touched it were healed. 

“Mark 6:53 (NIV) – When they had crossed over.” Blue Letter Bible. Web. 3 Apr, 2020. <https://www.blueletterbible.org/niv/mar/6/53/p1/s_963053&gt;.

 

Three years ago, I started working in a place where nearly everyone was visibly broken. There was a time, when I was afraid to get too close, for fear society’s ills would, leprosy-like, creep up my flesh. I did not yet know, how well I reside among the broken. That Jesus could walk by to find me groveling in the dirt, his tangled fringe grasped in both begging hands, and still, with eyes of compassion, see himself reflected there. Being among the ‘sick’ made me brave enough to examine my own festering wounds.  And offer them up, for His cure. Today’s poems reflect moments in this ongoing journey.

 

Need

‘They’ lie in the street -hovel deep

need so mottled and stark

one cannot even

conceive a dream.

 

Our only recourse – CRY OUT

at the pain we feel…or perceive.

Entitlement stoops clumsily

…to lend a hand up?

 

Jesus, we wait for you

Perhaps in the waiting

our knees should hit the dust

too.

jfig     3/2020

 

Brokenness

She does not need me to ‘announce’

what is wrong with her.

Funny…she already knows.

 

Nor to endorse a cure.

Leaking ‘helper’ need

does not increase her chances of survival.

 

By all means – draw near.

In helping to lift her wasted hand

both hers and mine will brush His hem.

 

jfig     3/2019-20

Where do you find yourself in the Jesus story – among the broken, or tending wounds, perhaps?    What do you see?

 

Soil

What if…

(audacious thought)

all the toil of Genesis 3

is wrought

in the soil of grace

What if?

 

What if

all the thorns and thistles

briars and invasive species

cannot withstand

this organism

called grace?

 

What if…

outside the gates

of Eden

(and Jerusalem)

the hills are alive…

in the colors of grace?

 

What if, all the toil of Genesis 3, were wrought in the soil of grace?

 

jfig 5/18

RW soil pic

The question that stops me in my tracks this morning, suspending motion, is this: What if God knew all along, that as Adam and Eve, and you and I spaded our way through the clay that sucks at the soles of our muck boots; what if God knew we would keep turning over… grace? That as we scratched out a living, and healing and hope down in the harsh dirt of living, we would turn over… grace? Not in the garden – in the warmth of Eden’s sun- but in the hard, cracked soil of all the desolate places outside? What if at Golgotha, skulls decaying in the margins of error and shame, one man amended the fields forever with blood-red grace? What if he knew that as we turned over life, clumps clinging, weighting the treads of our toiling steps, that this dirt would be good, not just for vegetables, but for journeying souls. What if Jesus allowed himself to be led outside, because that is where we are?

What if the fields of grace are ALIVE, breathing with organisms, to decompose the stench and misconceptions and broken ideas of sin; lies about who God is; lies we’ve propagated? What if this toil down on our knees, troweling through the dirt, painstakingly weeding the small creepers, rooting out this…and that which holds back fruit; what if all that dirt under our fingernails, turned over rich one day, and scratched out painfully the next, what if ALL of it… is grace?

Scripture references:

Genesis 3:17-19   And to the man he said,

“Since you listened to your wife and ate from the tree
whose fruit I commanded you not to eat,
the ground is cursed because of you.
All your life you will struggle to scratch a living from it.
18 It will grow thorns and thistles for you,
though you will eat of its grains.
19 By the sweat of your brow
will you have food to eat
until you return to the ground
from which you were made.
For you were made from dust,
and to dust you will return.”
“Genesis 3:17 (NLT) – And to the man he.” Blue Letter Bible. Web. 28 May, 2018. <https://www.blueletterbible.org/nlt/gen/3/17/p1/s_3017&gt;.

Luke 23:26 And as they led him away, they seized one Simon of Cyrene, who was coming in from the country, and laid on him the cross, to carry it behind Jesus.

Luke 23:32-34a Two others, who were criminals, were led away to be put to death with him. 33 And when they came to the place that is called The Skull, there they crucified him, and the criminals, one on his right and one on his left. 34 And Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.”

“Luke 23:26 (ESV) – And as they led him.” Blue Letter Bible. Web. 28 May, 2018. <https://www.blueletterbible.org/esv/luk/23/26/p1/s_996026&gt;.