As a kid I was fascinated by Chameleons, the small lizards that are able to change their coloration to match their surroundings. They are very adaptable, they fit into their context perfectly. Uh oh, I feel a Geico commercial coming on…
Context. Living in context, being relevant to your times, understanding the times in context. Though being truly relevant, meaningful to your times, usually means walking largely out of step with it. Having the renegade swag-factor, but not in an inflated, self-important sense. Wide-gate, narrow-gate stuff. I think of Jesus, and His ministry. How He fit into His context, His time, perfectly. And part of that had to do with how he moved in others lives so well. And moved against all that was wrong with Temple Worship, the Law. That’s what I am referring to here.
In his book “Beautiful Outlaw”, John Eldredge refers to Jesus healing of the Leper. And how in that very personal moment, in touching someone who was “untouchable”, He went right to healing the deeper wound. Leprosy was certainly a problem, but the mans spirit was mortally wounded. He needed the human touch, eliminating Leprosy wasn’t going deep enough. Jesus flew in the face of convention to give him what he needed. That’s the renegade-factor, being true.
The Leper NEEDED to be touched. Not from a healing stand point, but from an emotional one. Human touch itself is an incredibly healing, nurturing thing. Failure to thrive, in children and the elderly, is often more about lack of touch, affection, and human interaction as anything else.
But there is a place where God meets us, and reveals Himself as the One Source for all of our needs. But it’s not the Wal-Mart philosophy, where “I’m walking around with Jesus, and he’s talking to me, like my best friend and stuff”. Because when we hold Him, and His sacrifice, too casually we take the sacred and make it mundane. When we do that, we deny the beauty, power and mystery of what he did for us. We presume too much.
Yet the truth remains, that the only solution to your problem, the one person who can meet you where you are, and supply the unknown dose of what you need, is Jesus. The One Thing.