There are many interactions between Jesus and ordinary people in the Scripture that I find meaningful because they not only show us who Jesus is, but they also reveal His kindness and grace to those who could never measure up to God’s standards in their own strength.
One such encounter was when a certain father brought his son to Christ’s disciples asking that they set him free from the demonic spirit that had plagued him his whole life. The disciples, try as they might, were not able to alleviate the situation and that left the boy’s father shaken and hopeless. But that wasn’t the end of the story – for Jesus suddenly arrived!
The people of that area were overwhelmed with wonder at seeing Christ and they ran to greet Him – all except for that little knot of people gathered around the boy. Upon seeing their distress Christ asked what the trouble was about and the Father told Jesus of his son’s plight and of how he had been tormented his whole life by an evil spirit that in this case, robbed the boy of speech and caused him to have convulsions. The man told Jesus of how the disciples had been unable to help the boy and the father’s conversation with the Lord trailed off as he desperately concluded by saying: “if you can do anything, take pity on us and help us.”
This man had come to the end of himself. The people he had turned to for help had not been able to do anything for him and his boy and now as he stood before the Lord he was hopeless, but he didn’t have anywhere else to turn. Jesus for His part, immediately picked up on the man’s doubt and called him on it saying: ”If you can’?” said Jesus. “Everything is possible for one who believes.” At which the boy’s father immediately exclaimed: “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!”
This man was so filled with doubt that he even wondered if Christ would be able to help Him – not realizing that Jesus’ had all the power of God at His fingertips. I am touched by the fact that though Jesus challenged him on his attitude, Jesus did not turn and walk away from this exhausted man. And when the father confessed the fact that he had belief and unbelief wrapped up in his heart together, Jesus healed his son!
I know that as we walk with the Lord there are times when we like this man reach the end of ourselves. The people we have hoped would help us have not been able to and as we come to Christ we are not sure that even He can or will hear our cry. At times like that we are to confess our unbelief to Jesus! We can tell Him that we have both trust and doubt mixed up in our hearts at the same time – knowing that our honesty will not offend Him!
When this man confessed the reality of how he felt to Jesus – what did the Lord do? Did Jesus turn away from him and tell him to go work on his faith? Did He ignore the man’s request? Did He harden His heart to the boy? No! Jesus immediately commanded the spirit to leave the boy and gently helped him to his feet – the child was healed, and in a way, so was the father! All of that worry, fear and fatigue just melted away as Jesus did the impossible and met their need!
Don’t be afraid of confessing your difficulties and limitations to the Lord. Be honest about where you are in your walk of faith and ask Him to help you! And surely Jesus will do “immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine.” (Ephesians 3:20)
May God bless you