Let yourself become open to God and the knowledge that comes from the Word. Ask God for peace at this time.
Luke 7:1-10 (NRSV)
After Jesus had finished all his sayings in the hearing of the people, he entered Capernaum. A centurion there had a slave whom he valued highly, and who was ill and close to death. When he heard about Jesus, he sent some Jewish elders to him, asking him to come and heal his slave. When they came to Jesus, they appealed to him earnestly, saying, “He is worthy of having you do this for him, for he loves our people, and it is he who built our synagogue for us.” And Jesus went with them, but when he was not far from the house, the centurion sent friends to say to him, “Lord, do not trouble yourself, for I am not worthy to have you come under my roof; therefore I did not presume to come to you. But only speak the word, and let my servant be healed. For I also am a man set under authority, with soldiers under me; and I say to one, ’Go,’ and he goes, and to another, ’Come,’ and he comes, and to my slave, ’Do this,’ and the slave does it.” When Jesus heard this he was amazed at him, and turning to the crowd that followed him, he said, “I tell you, not even in Israel have I found such faith.” When those who had been sent returned to the house, they found the slave in good health.
When I was about 10 years old, my nephew and I were playing with a boy named Kenny. Kenny’s dad worked for the utility company and came to pick him up in his work truck, which had a basket lift on it. My nephew and I were impressed. Kenny’s dad let him ride up in the basket until it was several feet off of the ground. Then we witnessed something even more impressive. Kenny was in the basket, high above us, and his dad told him to jump into his arms. Kenny looked down at his father for only a split second, and then lunged toward the ground into his father’s arms. As a kid with trust issues, I was completely amazed by this level of trust. Kenny’s dad said the word and Kenny had faith that he would catch him.
The centurion had faith that Jesus could and would heal his slave. The centurion didn’t feel worthy to have Jesus come to his house, so he said, “But only speak the word, and let my servant be healed.” His actions would be like us calling the doctor and expecting to get well without being treated or receiving medication. However, the centurion was dealing with Jesus, which made all the difference.
The centurion’s faith is something to which we should all aspire. How many times have we been in a tough situation and failed to have faith that Christ is at work in our lives? We stress ourselves into ulcers, high blood pressure, and tension headaches. Sometimes we are downright neurotic. This passage reminds us that Jesus has got us. Kenny’s faith was based on the knowledge that his father could be trusted. As Christians, we know the same to be true of God.
Holy and faithful God, calm our fears. Bring us to stillness and into your presence. We know that you are with us in all circumstances. Strengthen our faith so we can live and breathe your presence in all we do. In Christ’s name, Amen.
Go with God.