In any culture where it exists, leprosy makes its victim an outcast. People might feel bad for the afflicted, but they quickly look away. No one invites the leper to dinner, few even go to visit the leper. Shunned, closeted away, quickly forgotten.
In every culture where it exists today, pain and suffering are treated almost like leprosy. We’ll talk about the problem, pray for the victims, form organizations to address the problem, and even give money to address the issue. But few people do more.
We feel safe at a distance.
We feel sanitized if we don’t have to touch the hurting.
We feel we’ve done our part if we throw a few dollars at it.
But not Jesus. He handled the hurting … literally.
A man with leprosy came and knelt in front of Jesus. He said, “Lord, You have the power to make me well, if only You wanted to.” Jesus put His hand on the man and said, “I want to! Now you are well.” At once the man’s leprosy disappeared.
Jesus put His hand on the man. He didn’t just pray. He didn’t give money. He didn’t organize a rally to address the problem of leprosy. He touched a hurting man.
He got messy.
He conveyed love to a hurting man like nothing else could have.
Robert Shuller wisely noted, “Being a Christian is offering yourself to Him. Your mind for Christ to think through; your heart for Christ to love through; your lips for Christ to speak through; your hands for Christ to touch through.”
What about it? Are you ready to convey the love of Christ by touching — literally — people’s problems? Nothing says “I love you” like the human touch.