I hate going to the doctor. And, I'm terrible about it. Instead of going in for regular check-ups to try to prevent things from going wrong, or to catch things early enough, I wait until something is really wrong (which, thankfully, knock-on-wood, has not happened yet). Even when I was pregnant, I wasn't very good about doctor appointments. When I was in labor with my eldest son, my husband - ready to bring me to the hospital - couldn't find me. I'd crawled back in bed saying I'd go in the morning. This was at 11pm... my son was born at 2am.With my 12 year old son - I didn't even go in for a pregnancy test until I was almost 5 months along (which, by that time, the test was just a formality anyway and really quite pointless).
Turning to Something When NecessaryHow many of you do this with your cars? Instead of regular tune-ups, you wait until something breaks before bringing the vehicle in?
What about sex? This seems to be a common thing in today's society - almost seemingly acceptable. Instead of working on a relationship and putting in the time and effort, we find someone who can relieve certain physical needs of ours when we have them, then push the person out the door and go on with our lives.
Or friendships? Some of us have that one friend we always go to when we're hurt or depressed or need something. But, the rest of the time, eh... there's more important things to do.
What about Christ?
Thanks For the Help - I'm Done With You For NowThe doctor delivers the baby, or fixes the issue, and my response (at least in my head) is "Thanks for the help. I'm done with you for now."
I'm sure this is the same thing for those of you who are negligent about regular tune-ups for your cars. You take the car in to the mechanic to be fixed, pay your bill, and drive away hoping you never have to see the person again.
Sex? That one night stand you used to get your fix? And the friend who helped you in your moment of distress? You're pretty sure you'll need them again at some point, but at that time... "Thanks for the help. I'm done with you for now."
What about with Christ?
The Blind ManIn Mark 10:46-52, we find Jesus and His disciples coming across Bartimaeus, a blind beggar on the side of the road. Bartimaeus, upon hearing it was Jesus, asked for His help. He wanted to see again. Jesus heals the man of his blindness.
Jesus said to him, “Go; your faith has made you well.” (Mark 10:52... kind of....)
In preparing for this post, I was trying to find an image that had this verse on it. Nearly every verse I found only had that first half quoted: "Go; your faith has made you well." This half-quote seems very much the way many of us are - with our health, our belongings, our relationships, and especially with our faith. We seek help when we need it, and then we go.
But this half-quote was not the end of the story about Bartimaeus. It wasn't even the main lesson (in my opinion). Yes, Jesus performs miracles and heals. We see this time and again in our Bible. But there is so much more to the story... all wrapped up in the last 5 words of the verse....
"Immediately he regained his sight and followed him on the way." (Mark 10:52... the rest of it)
What about Christ?Bartimaeus didn't just get his sight back and say "Yo! Thanks Jesus! Have a good trip." He didn't just go after his faith made him well. He followed Him on the way. He recognized that Jesus is the way... that he must follow that way.
Our constant dismissal of doctors and mechanics and relationships (and whatever else) until we need these people/things - do we do this with Christ? Do we only turn to Him when our hearts, minds and bodies are burdened? Or do we recognize that He is the way. Following Him - consistently and constantly and proactively - is the way?
This Lenten season, and throughout the rest of the year, let us all make a commitment to follow Him on the way. Do not turn to Him only when you need Him, and then just go. Let's keep our hearts and minds on Him at all times, following His teachings, leading others to Him... to the Way.