People-Watching in Ancient Israel (And Seeing Myself)
|Photographer Itamar Grinberg, Courtesy of Israel Tourism|
|Photographer Dana Friedlander, Courtesy of Israel Tourism|
On a sleepy snowy morning this week, I cuddled under my covers for the last ten minutes of sleep. My husband had just slipped off to work, and my teens showered and dressed on their own. Cracking open the bedroom door, my four year old said, “Mom?…Dad said I can get you if I need you.”
“Sure, Daniel, what do you need?”
“Nuffing, just come!”
Five minutes into his time alone, he missed me, craving relationship, companionship, closeness.
Fresh into reading the New Testament again now –after years of tracing my way slowly through the Old Testament, trying to read it with fresh eyes as if I had never seen it before — I am once again asking the Author to bring his word alive to me. Abba, open my eyes, help me to see you in a new way, teach me.
Pulling my hot tea close, I grab a pen, my journal, and crack open the New Testament, eager to meet this God-Man Messiah I have been reading ancient parchments about for years. Jesus, teach me who you are, show me you anew.
I find myself people-watching in ancient Israel.
- People are amazed after hearing the Carpenter’s Son speak for hours. Instead of racing home for food and a nap, they follow him. Large crowds walk behind him, eager to hear what he’ll say next.
- This God-Man stands out from the other teachers and leaders the people are used to hearing, and he speaks with authority.
- The infectious, the ill, the needy follow him. “Jesus, if you are willing, you can make me clean.” Jesus reached out his hand and touched the man. “I am willing,” he said. “Be clean.”
And suddenly five minutes into being alone here in snowy Minnesota with my tea, I have missed him –this Carpenter’s Son– and crave relationship, companionship, closeness. Crowds follow him, amazed by him, craving closeness with him.
The needy follow him. And I see myself there, echoing these words. “Lord, if you are willing…”
And the God-Man never tires, never gets “peopled-out.” He reaches out a hand, says “I’m willing!” and touches us.
Linking with Ann at A Holy Experience.