If Jesus were me, He would ask God for direction. He would be responsive to God’s leading. He wouldn’t make decisions based on peer pressure or guilt. He wouldn’t cling to His own predetermined plans, the way I do.
I remember a time when I was supposed to be leading a Bible study. That’s where I wanted to be that morning, fellowshipping with other women and learning about the Lord. I was needed there. I had important responsibilities there.
Instead, I was at home with my son, who was then just a pre-schooler, because he wouldn’t stop throwing up. I had a very bad attitude about having my plans derailed. That’s when the Lord directed me to the passage in Luke chapter eight, about Jairus and the unclean woman who touched Jesus’ cloak.
Jesus is hurrying to the home of Jairus, an important synagogue official, on an urgent mission to heal the man’s daughter. There is no time to lose, but when Jesus suddenly realizes that a person in the crowd has touched Him and been healed, He drops everything. He doesn’t care whom He must keep waiting. He knows that God has done something miraculous, and He will not rest until He has joined in what the Father is doing.
He waits for the woman who touched him to come forward and tell her story. During this delay, messengers report that Jairus’ daughter has died, making it pointless for him to take up any more of Jesus’ time. But Jesus says, “Do not be afraid any longer; only believe and she shall be made well” (Luke 8:50b).
In the end, because Jesus followed God’s leading, the unclean woman was healed both in body and in spirit, and Jesus did more than Jairus dared to hope for by raising his daughter from the dead. God’s direction and timing are always perfect.
It became so clear that just then God was working in the life of my son, and He wanted me to join Him. That morning, there was really nothing more important for me to do than hold my little boy in my lap, feeding him Gatorade by the teaspoonful, and letting the Father’s love flow through me to him.
The Father’s love for our little ones is great. So much so that Jesus tells us their angels in heaven continually see His face (Matt 18:10). That shouldn’t really surprise us. Jesus says over and over that the kingdom of heaven belongs to them. It’s time we really started believing that He meant what He said.
For those in the midst of the wild, hectic, wonderful season of young motherhood, I propose a new spiritual discipline, uniquely suited to the shape of our lives right now: the discipline of child-watching. Let’s ask the Father to open our eyes to all that He loves most about our children, and see what we will discover as He teaches us to follow their example, “…for he who is least among you, this is the one who is great.” (Luke 9:48)
Rebecca D. Bruner © 2011