One of the kids I babysit regularly came to visit me in the hospital back in February. He’s normally very outgoing, not at all shy, and loves to be the center of attention. But when he walked into my hospital room, he hid behind his mom.
When we asked him what was wrong, he said, “You’re sick.”
“I am sick, buddy,” I said, “but I’m here to get better. Come give me a hug, come jump on my bed – nothing’s different.” He eventually warmed up to a new place, but not before telling me that I had to stay in bed and that I couldn’t talk because I had to get better.
Since coming home from the hospital, I’ve seen my little buddy a few times, and each time, he’s asked me if I’m still sick. We’ve told him that I’m all better now, but then he catches sight of my insulin pump. “What’s that?” he’ll ask (twenty times a day). “It gives me medicine,” I answer. “But I thought you were all better. Are you still sick?” Very perceptive, my little buddy.
It’s hard to explain chronic illnesses to a three year old, let alone adults. Someday, he’ll understand that just because I have to take medicine doesn’t mean that I’m sick – it’s just that my healthy is different from his. But for now, what he wants to know is if I’ll read him a book, or play dinosaurs or let him win at candy land.
Jesus said to them, “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick.
I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners.” – Mark 2:17
Maybe it took me this long to really understand this verse, or maybe recent events have prompted me to think about it more, but it’s taken on new meaning lately. You see, when we are sick, we go to the doctor (sometimes kicking and screaming the whole way). And when the doc gives us the all clear after a few days of antibiotics, we don’t go back until we get sick again.
But that’s not the way our Spiritual health really works.
We tend to think that if we go to THE doctor (Jesus) once, then we’ll be all better after we take the medicine for 7 days, just like the regular doctor, and we don’t have to go back again until we’re sick again.
But the thing is, the medicine that Jesus prescribes
is one that we have to take EVERY day –
not just when we’re sick.
A lot of my meds are like that. We call them maintenance meds. If you don’t take them every day, you’ll be more susceptible to get sick, to end up in the hospital, or you may just not be able to breathe very well. Antibiotics are used in the short term, but those maintenance meds – we take them EVERY day.
Jesus didn’t come to give us antibiotics and quick fixes and band-aids. He came to prescribe maintenance meds, and we can only get them from the Living Water Pharmacy. We have to keep going back to the source to be well, and to be healed.
Kristen Entwistle is the blog manager for Broken Beautiful BOLD and is a graduate student pursuing her PhD in biochemistry and molecular biology at Michigan State University. She helps to lead worship at her church on Sunday mornings and leads a women’s Bible study on Saturday mornings. She was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis when she was three months old, and has seen God work through the ups and downs of life and through her disease. In response to God’s calling, Kristen started All For Him Life, a ministry seeking to encourage and challenge women of all ages in Christ with FREE Bible studies offered throughout the year.
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