Don’t Tell Anyone.

“Go right over to the priest and let him examine you. Don’t talk to anyone along the way. Take along the offering required in the law of Moses for those who have been healed of leprosy, so everyone will have proof of your healing.” But as the man went on his way, he spread the news, telling everyone what had happened to him. As a result, such crowds soon surrounded Jesus that he couldn’t enter a town anywhere publicly. He had to stay out in the secluded places, and people from everywhere came to him there. — Mark 1:44-45

What if you were instantly healed of a life-threatening illness?

You’d accepted the reality of it and made plans based on the end result. Bravely, you declared you would fight it and sought advice, treatments and any resources that would boost your resolve. You plunged to the depths of fear and worry. About living an abbreviated life. About the pain and weakness you would experience along the way, how it would alter your body and mind. About the ones you would leave behind.

You brought your family and friends closer to nourish you. You questioned and explored the meaning behind the illness. You’d somewhat settled on a greater plan behind it. You prayed. You shouted. You cried. You begged. You repented. Asked for strength. You praised. You shouted again.

You made practical plans. Was your life insurance policy enough to take care of them when you were gone, did you have the appropriate beneficiaries in place? Were your funeral expenses going to be cared for? All debts resolved? Would you be leaving behind anything to cause undue pressure on them?

Had you resolved conflicts? Calls to people you felt you’d wronged to made a bridge. I’m sorry. I wish I’d listened to you. I wish I hadn’t let such a small disagreement come between us. Did the ones closest to you know you loved them? I’m sorry for not saying it more. You mean everything to me. Were you happy with the person who wold be leaving this world? You searched your heart to know whether the person you’d become was good, decent, someone to be remembered in a positive light.

You’d seen your body succumbing to the illness, though your heart and mind were fighting. Now confined to a bed, something beyond you putting you to sleep, taking your breath, telling you its getting close. You had buckled yourself in from the ride home and told everyone goodbye.

Then, someone you’ve never seen comes to your room. He takes your hand and smiles tenderly, as he looks deep into your eyes. You don’t have the energy to be alarmed by the stranger. I don’t know you, but your hand is warm. Thank you for being here. I’m worried.

“You’re ok, he says.” And, he sits for a moment quietly.

Where have I seen you before? And, are you lost? I would hate to think you’d wandered into the wrong room.

He laughs as if he heard what you were thinking and says don’t tell anyone about this. The smile fades and he looks sternly. Don’t tell anyone about this but your surgeon. He will know that you are better.

“What?” you mumble. And, he leaves.

Out of nowhere you go into shock. Something is wrong….what’s happening. An electrical current surges through you. Terror crashes in. Strength and warmth come like a strong tide. You feel your heart racing, pounding. You can hear your heart beating. This is it, I’m about to die! God, I didn’t know it would be like this!

You clench your teeth and wait for the descent. Praying with tears.

Then, a whisper inside tells you, “You’re ok.” Hush. You’re not sick anymore. It was the same whisper that told you months before that you were sick and you believed it. You lay as one dead in your hospital bed, staring at the ceiling. Seconds pass and you feel yourself rising up. You’re sitting up. Now you’re on your feet. It’s gone.

Would you tell anyone about this?

We can’t judge the leper for disobeying Jesus’ instruction to not tell. He’d already invested what he thought were his last days in dying. To come to the sudden conclusion that he was ok now compelled him to tell.

Something tells me Jesus didn’t hold a grudge.


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