Look around. Open your eyes. Do you see them? Do you hear them? They’re crying out to us. They’re asking for help; they’re looking for answers. They don’t know where to turn and they don’t know what to do. They’re hurting and desperate for help! They’re wondering if someone, anyone cares. Do you hear them? Do you see them? They’re looking for our help!
There are so many people among us who are brokenhearted, shattered, and in need of great help. They’re crying out! They feel abandoned, unloved, and forgotten. As Christians, it’s our responsibility to reach them. It’s our responsibility to encourage them, pray for them, and to lead them to Christ. We must let them know that they are not overlooked nor rejected. They are indeed thought of and loved. We must seize the moment!
Throughout the day, hurting men, women, teens and young children cross our paths. No matter what, we must notice them. Maybe our own issues and/or not knowing what to say causes us to look the other way. Perhaps we notice the hurting, but we’re afraid to do any. Or we don’t say anything because we’re not sure what to do or if we can help. Possibly, we don’t reach out to the downtrodden because we aren’t sure if they’ll receive what we have to say or give. Whatever the reason might be, we bite our tongue and we turn the other way, not taking the opportunity to do something. We don’t offer a prayer and hope for their situation. We just keep quiet and don’t do anything.
A person’s demeanor, attitude, and body language give clues to a need that may go unspoken.
My friend, the simplest words, a genuine smile, or a hug can make a huge difference in someone’s life. Look at what happened when Jesus seized the moment during one of His Bible Study meetings.
LUKE `13:10-17, NKJV
Now He was teaching in one of the synagogues on the Sabbath. And behold, there was a woman who had a spirit of infirmity eighteen years, and was bent over and could in no way raise herself up. But when Jesus saw her, He called her to Him and said to her, “Woman, you are loosed from your infirmity.” And He laid His hands on her, and immediately she was made straight, and glorified God. But the ruler of the synagogue answered with indignation, because Jesus had healed on the Sabbath; and he said to the crowd, “There are six days on which men ought to work; therefore come and be healed on them, and not on the Sabbath day.” The Lord then answered him and said, “Hypocrite! Does not each one of you on the Sabbath loose his ox or donkey from the stall, and lead it away to water it? So ought not this woman, being a daughter of Abraham, whom Satan has bound—think of it—for eighteen years, be loosed from this bond on the Sabbath?” And when He said these things, all His adversaries were put to shame; and all the multitude rejoiced for all the glorious things that were done by Him.”
In today’s passage we read about a woman who has been crippled for 18 years. The Bible says this illness was caused by a demon (v. 11, AMP). Due to this sickness, she could not stand upright. Her condition did not prevent her from going to church. I imagined that she went to hear a right-now word from the Lord. She went to a place where people like herself could receive prayer and words of encouragement. She went to a place where church leaders would offer comfort and spiritual counsel. This was supposed to be a place where she could be freed from her illness.
However, instead of finding compassion and hearing kind words, this woman received nothing. Rather than hearing a fervent prayer and being delivered, a hurting soul remained bound by her sickness and overlooked by the congregation. Why? Because no one wanted to deal with her issues. No one made time to noticed her. Nobody was brave enough to seize the moment and help. No one seemed to care about her condition. No one paid attention to her needs. No one reached out to help. She was in church – with an obvious need – but no one did anything. No one acted. Except Jesus.
Jesus did three powerful and impactful things that changed this woman’s life:
- Jesus saw her (v. 12a). Jesus was alert and attentive to what was going on around Him. He always is. He’s a multi-tasker. Though He was teaching in the synagogue, He observed everything and everyone. He noticed the women’s condition. Like Jesus, we must pay special attention to the people around us. Be observant. We cannot be so busy that we fail to notice a need. A person’s demeanor, attitude, and body language give clues to a need that may go unspoken.
- Jesus reached out to her. He invited her into His space. This woman may have felt like an outsider, alone, and out of place. She probably had an inferiority complex because of her appearance. But Jesus knocked down the barrier and called the woman to Himself. He showed kindness to her. We must do the same. Extend a hand to the hurting and bid them into our circle. We must show interest in their situation, accept them, and let them know that we actually do care.
- Jesus took action (v.12b-13). He did what no one else did. He courageously spoke up. Jesus went against the grain and did the opposite. Even though He knew He would be criticized (v. 14), Jesus did something. He healed the woman and boldly reprimanded the ruler of the synagogue. Likewise, we must take brave action to speak out and stand up for the weak. Encourage them by sharing God’s Word. Offer godly wisdom, comfort, and pray for them (Luke 4:40). Act by really listening to them. Be an active listener, a shoulder to cry on, someone that they can talk to. Seize the moment by doing whatever you can to help.
When Jesus saw the woman, He invited her into His space. Then He took action by healing her body and speaking up for her.
My sisters, people are hurting. They are crying out for help. Do you hear them? Let us take notice. When we see them, we must do something. Let’s take the necessary steps to reach them, act, and make a difference in their lives! Let’s ask God to show us how to seize the moment today.
Let’s walk in freedom together!
IT’S WEDNESDAY, HUMP DAY. HERE’S OUR BIBLICAL PRINCIPLE TO HELP US GET OVER THE HUMP.
1 JOHN 3:16-17 MSG
16-17 This is how we’ve come to understand and experience love: Christ sacrificed his life for us. This is why we ought to live sacrificially for our fellow believers, and not just be out for ourselves. If you see some brother or sister in need and have the means to do something about it but turn a cold shoulder and do nothing, what happens to God’s love? It disappears. And you made it disappear.