This coming Sunday is Palm Sunday followed by Holy Week or the week that includes the arrest, crucifixion, and rising of our Lord and Savior. Everyone knows the story. But there's one detail of the story that I think sometimes gets just touched on and brushed aside. Maybe not, but today it struck me as incredibly profound.
Luke 22:49-51 says, "When those around Him saw what was going to happen, they said to Him, 'Lord, shall we strike with the sword?' And one of them struck the servant of the high priest and cut off his right ear. But Jesus answered and said, 'Permit even this.' And He touched his ear and healed him." Although all four books of the Gospel report this event, only Luke states that Jesus touched the ear of Malchus (the name of the servant according to John) and HEALED him.
There are lots of discussion topics in these three short verses - how the disciples were quick to act, not even waiting for the word of their Lord; how they were quick to fight for Jesus in the garden, but then Peter denied him 3 times just a short time later; how Jesus didn't fight his arrest although he did nothing wrong. In some of the other books of the Gospel, Jesus states that this HAS to happen, that He knew it was going to happen. Today I want to focus on the healing.
My first thought is a rather common one, maybe. I thought, "Wow! He even healed one of the men that came to arrest Him!" And it is amazing! But then I thought, "Why? Why would Jesus do that?" We know that Jesus taught His followers (us) to love our neighbors as ourselves, including our enemies. He taught us to turn the other cheek when we've been wronged. Jesus is the ultimate example of pure, true love. Even so, I would think in my pitiful human brain, "Didn't Jesus have enough to be concerned about with his pending arrest, trial, and crucifixion?" Obviously, Jesus still had compassion on this man and healed him as a result. I think maybe another reason He healed Malchus was to set an example for the men who would soon be responsible for carrying on His Word, but maybe, just maybe He had yet another reason.
There are lots of ways to learn. One of my dear friends is a visual learner. Many are tactile learners. I'm not for sure, but I think I'm an AUDITORY learner - I learn best when LISTENING to what I'm supposed to know. Malchus needed his ears to LISTEN and LEARN the full meaning behind what we know as John 3:16. Jesus knew that. So He performed His final miracle before His death and resurrection on a nonbeliever who never asked to be healed. What do you think Malchus was thinking and feeling inside as this man who he was coming to help arrest reattached his ear? How could any human being not be moved and forever changed by that? Do you think he wondered if they were making a mistake but at that point was too chicken to say anything? Maybe he was too freaked out to think anything until long after it was all said and done. I don't know what ever happened to Malchus. Who knows? Maybe we'll all find out "the rrrest of the story" one day when we get to Heaven. In the meantime, I encourage you to keep your eyes and your EARS open for what the Lord wants to teach you each and every day.
PRAYER REQUESTS: My heart is very disturbed with these two new prayer requests I need to lift up. First, I need you all to pray mightily for a 7-year-old boy named Ethan Bibb. Ethan is undergoing an approximately 8 hour surgery tomorrow, March 31st, at Vanderbilt Children's Hospital for a brain tumor. Apparently, Ethan was sick for about a week with what everyone thought was just a "bug". After about a week of not being able to hold anything down, they took him in for more testing and found a tumor about the size of a walnut at the base of his brain. This touches me very deeply because my Alison is 7 years old. Not only that, but if you look at this growing list of prayer requests there are several children on it with a form of cancer or some kind of tumor. Why, God? Why is this happening to our babies??? I don't mean to question the One who is in control of everything, but I don't understand it! Please, my prayer warriors, pray tonight and all day tomorrow for Ethan. Pray that the doctors will have Divine wisdom. Pray that the Lord will guide their hands. The brain is so delicate and yet so incredibly vital to our existence. Pray mightily that they will find that this tumor is BENIGN and not malignant!! Pray that with all of your heart! Pray that the Lord will hold Ethan's parents, Ferris and Robin, and his big sister, Lana, close to Him in His loving arms through the surgery and during the recovery process. Pray that the Lord will give them an abundance of patience and a peace that passes all understanding. Pray that young Ethan will recovery quickly, that he will grow stronger in mind, body, and spirit with each passing minute and that his pain is minimal. I believe that the Lord has big plans for Ethan and his family. Maybe he will even be the one to discover a cure for cancer. I believe it! Just like I believe that there truly is power in prayer! I will most definitely keep you updated as I receive updates.
Also, I need you to pray for a gentleman by the name of Leif Sherry. Leif & his wife, Sarah, live in Falls Church, VA, the county that backs up to Washington, D.C. Unfortunately, Leif has been missing since February 24, 2009 and was last seen at 8:30am, when he dropped his wife off at work. He never arrived to work himself, and has not been seen since. His cell has not been active since the same day at 2 when it was used to check his voice mail, and has since been turned off. His credit/check cards have also not been used. As of yet, he has not been seen, and his car has not been found. Sarah, who is pregnant with their first child, a son, is in Louisiana to be with her family during this time. Above all else, please pray for Leif's safe return. Though we do not know where he is, our Lord does. Please pray that the Lord is with him where ever he is, whatever situation he is in. Pray that the Lord is making Himself known to Leif so that Leif does not feel alone through this. Just pray that Leif is found.
Updates: My granny, Betty Moltz, was recently readmitted to the hospital with fluid around her lungs. She had surgery this past Friday to drain the fluid and it went well. She is still in the hospital but out of ICU, so that's good. Please pray for a speedy recovery for her and for a steady increase of strength.
My little Olivia turned 5 years old today! My goodness, how the time flies!!! Well, I had to take her to the doctor, just to be cautious, because she was complaining of a belly ache and Alison is working on getting over strep throat. Thankfully, Olivia does not have strep throat. The doctor was only slightly concerned that if her platelets had dropped too far below what they had been (18K) it might be an issue with her spleen so he wanted to get a platelet count. :o( Nothing like getting "poinky" shots on your birthday! They got a count there at the doctor's office and it was 15K, not a significant drop and enough platelets that the doctor felt very comfortable that her spleen was okay. He said that sometimes the office got a bad reading (for whatever reason) so they sent it off to the lab and he would call me if the lab got a different reading. About an hour of so later he called. The office got a bad reading alright! Livi's platelets are up to 55K!!! What a GREAT birthday gift! We've been happy dancing all over our house since. This could mean that she is free to do certain things now like possibly even play softball. She has her 5-year-old check up on Wednesday so I'll know more then. Even though this is great news, please continue to pray for Livi as she still has some healing to do. Please pray her prayer: "Jesus, thank you for healing me and please put more platelets in my body!"
Always feel free to send me prayer requests (even unspoken) through my personal email address found under my profile at the right. There truly is power in prayer!
That's it for now. I plan on posting again on Friday to update you on the progress I'm making on The Heart's Journey Home and maybe include another snippet. Maybe. I don't want to give too much away, though! :o) Also, in the near future, as soon as I have enough time to do as much reading as I would like, I am going to be posting reviews of books of fellow Sheaf House authors, of some of my other author friends, and of some authors that I just admire and enjoy reading. So be looking forward to that. Until next time, love and blessings to you and yours!