Lenten Devotional // Day 21

Friday, March 25 
HEALING FAITH by Bryan Luettgen

Matthew 8:5-13

When Jesus went to Capernaum, a centurion approached, pleading with him, “Lord, my servant is flat on his back at home, paralyzed, and his suffering is awful.”
Jesus responded, “I’ll come and heal him.”
But the centurion replied, “Lord, I don’t deserve to have you come under my roof. Just say the word and my servant will be healed. I’m a man under authority, with soldiers under me. I say to one, ‘Go,’ and he goes, and to another, ‘Come,’ and he comes. I say to my servant, ‘Do this,’ and the servant does it.”
When Jesus heard this, he was impressed and said to the people following him, “I say to you with all seriousness that even in Israel I haven’t found faith like this. I say to you that there are many who will come from east and west and sit down to eat with Abraham and Isaac and Jacob in the kingdom of heaven. But the children of the kingdom will be thrown outside into the darkness. People there will be weeping and grinding their teeth.”Jesus said to the centurion, “Go; it will be done for you just as you have believed.” And his servant was healed that very moment.

Reflection

Think about the power of the centurion's faith for what he is asking Jesus to do. Since the servant is not in their presence, the centurion has complete confidence Jesus will actually heal his servant remotely, without having the ability to see for himself that Jesus performed the healing successfully. While we can only begin to imagine how visually shocking and awe-inspiring something like the miracle of the rising of Lazarus must have looked like, I would argue that Jesus healing of the servant reflects a deeper testament of faith in the centurion precisely because he doesn't need to see a dramatic visual episode like this to have faith in Jesus.
In 2022, we can relate to this because Jesus no longer has physical presence here on Earth, and it is necessary for us to have faith Jesus will carry out miracles in our lives without being able to see physical proof. When good things do happen in our lives, we should recognize Jesus played a crucial role in helping bring about this good luck or empowering ourselves to achieve good things, just as the centurion did in Jesus when he healed his servant.

Question for Contemplation

Have you ever lost faith that Jesus is making a difference in your life? What are some strategies to think positively and thankfully about the ways Jesus has influenced your relationships, success, and good fortunes even in small ways?
The centurion held a high level of authority in the Roman government with many soldiers working under his jurisdiction. How can you relate to his words to Jesus: “Lord, I don’t deserve to have you come under my roof”?

Prayer

Dear God, I pray that you do miraculous things to the lives of each and every person who reads this message. May the miracles you perform as we improve and develop our lives and relationships with others not go unappreciated. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

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