Last night I had the privilege to speak to our Middle School & High School students at our monthly joint ministries gathering that we call Shockwave. It was a blast hanging out with them and our student ministry team did a great job with the event. I spoke on the passage in Mark 1:40-45 where Jesus heals the leper and talked about how in the midst of the incredible pain, isolation, and loneliness that the leper felt, Jesus brought hope, healing, and restoration. Jesus was the only one who could clean the unclean. He was the only one who could cure the incurable. And Jesus was the only one who was willing to touch the untouchable.
The cool thing is this: Jesus treats us the same as the leper. When we've wandered far from God and realize we're dirty and sick in our sin, it's only the person of Jesus who can clean and cure. When we seem to be so isolated and lonely in the world, it's Jesus who offers a caring touch.
But it doesn't stop there. Jesus then calls us - commands us - to go and touch the untouchable in our world. We've been made clean. We've been given a cure. We've been touched by hope and love. And we're called to share that hope with even the very least of the people around us...the hurting, the helpless, and the hopeless...so that we might become the very hands of Jesus.
Who was the last "leper" that you touched? Whens the last time you showed love to someone simply because God loves them? How long has it been since you've served someone without expecting anything in return? When is the last time you've touched the untouchable?
And if you're currently involved in sharing the hope and love of the God of touch within your community, I'd love to hear your story. Feel free to comment away and share your ideas of bringing hope into our world.