Taken from Pete’s series What Will Jesus Do?.
Love can change a person the way a parent can change a baby—awkwardly, and often with a great deal of mess.
— Lemony Snicket, Horseradish
What does Jesus want to do through me?
What does Jesus want to do with me?
Normally, I like to focus on what Jesus does through us. In a culture tempted to please God by checking off a list of rules, emphasizing the grace of God means emphasizing His indwelling Spirit whose power transforms us. But Jesus relates to us with all the prepositions:
Through Christ, our Mediator
On Christ, our Foundation
In Christ, our Life-giver
With Christ, our Partner
Unto Christ, our End
For Christ, our Lover
The next few days, we’re talking about the partnership between Jesus and those of us who’ve invited Him to live through us. We don’t disappear when He indwells us; we join Him. One gift of this partnership is that Jesus wants to do something with us.
What is it?
We’re in Luke 8. A former demon-possessed man once lived among the tombs, feeling more at home among the dead. But then Jesus came, the demons left, and the man was found sitting at the feet of Jesus.
He was naked and now dressed.
He was out of his mind but now sane.
He once lived among death and now sat at the feet of Life.
And the people were afraid. “Then all the people of the region of the Gerasenes asked Jesus to leave them, because they were overcome with fear. So he got into the boat and left” (Luke 8:37).
Can you imagine how this man must have felt? He was healed—a cause for celebration! Why was no one celebrating? Why weren’t they rolling out the welcome mat for Jesus? All, not just some of the people, wanted his Healer to leave.
This transformed man begged Jesus, “Take me with You!”
But Jesus sent him away, saying, “Return home and tell how much God has done for you.” (Luke 8:38b-39a)
And there we have it. Jesus wants us to share our faith with our family of origin. Could He have asked for anything more difficult?
Lord, how do I feel about partnering with You—especially if it means I stay in a place I’d rather leave? I offer to You any anxieties, feelings of inadequacy, or even disappointments. I offer You my story. Amen.