Wednesday, April 4, 2012

JAIRUS

What would I do with Jesus?

I would fall to my knees and worship Him – forever.

What else could I do? He gave me life that, somewhere between tradition and duties and rituals, I had lost.

I had been a leader in my synagogue for many years when news of this Jesus, this carpenter's son, had come to me.

When I first heard of His claims, I thought Him to be a blasphemer. A prophet? From Nazareth? How could anything good come from that God-forsaken state?

And He claimed not only to be a prophet, but the very Son of God! The Messiah! Oh, how my body raged with anger!

Surely, if God had a son He would choose one of His priests. Someone of authority. But a carpenter's son? The thought seemed too preposterous to even dwell upon.

Then came the day that my Anna had taken ill. At first I thought it nothing more than a cold. I was sure in a few days she would be well and we could go on with our lives.

But she didn't improve; she grew worse. Her fever would rise and fall sporadically. I hired the best physicians in the land. I received every available diagnosis.

I should tell you here that my Anna was very special to me. You see, my wife and I had tried for many years to have children, but it seemed that God had closed the womb of my dear one.

After many years of prayer and offerings, God had opened her womb and she conceived! I had prepared myself for a son, but was so overjoyed to have a child, any child, that Anna immediately became my whole life.

My whole world centered around Anna. My thoughts were continually on my sweet miracle child.

So when the physicians told me there was nothing more they could do, I cried out to God in anger. Why?! Why?! Why give me so precious a gift just to destroy it? Take anything else I have, but not my Anna! But God was not listening to me. I was helpless and all the wealth and high position I had acquired could do nothing to save her.

Anna was nearing death. I could not bear to be in the same room. My wife simply sat beside her and stared into nothing. Suddenly, for no apparent reason, this Jesus came to mind -- and the stories I'd heard of Him healing lepers, giving sight to the blind, opening deaf ears by His word.

I finally fought off my logic and intellectual pride and left the room to find this Jesus. In my head I knew what I was thinking was insane, but in my heart, all I knew was that my Anna was dying. Anna was dying and I had to do something.

It wasn't hard to find Jesus. I just looked for a large crowd and worked my way through.

I really don't know where I got my strength. It had been days since I had eaten or slept, but as I saw the massive crowd, I was determined to see Jesus and I pushed and shoved, sometimes crawled, until I stood before Him. I didn't know what to expect. I didn't know what to say. As we exchanged glances, in that moment, I knew He knew everything within.

I fell on my face crying, sobbing. All that came out was, "Please...heal... Anna!" Then He helped me up and asked me where she was. As we walked, my newly gained strength immediately left when I saw my servant rushing towards us.

The look on his face told me before he even spoke the words. "Your daughter is dead; we have no need for the prophet now."

Just as anger began to well up inside me again, Jesus touched me gently on the shoulder and said, "Jairus, only believe."

The anger was replaced with confusion. Only believe? Believe what? Anna was dead! What could He--this Nazarene--do now?

As we neared the house, we heard the mourners singing. They were playing instruments as they wailed their hypocritical songs of remorse. They reminded me of an actor's troop putting on a play--a play performed many times before--but this time at the expense of my Anna.

I was about to call my servants to have them all thrown out, when Jesus spoke for the first time since we had left the crowds. "Why do you weep?" He asked. "This child is not dead...she only sleeps."

Naturally, they began to laugh at him. I don't know if it was because of Anna or pity for Jesus, but when they began mocking him I was filled with fury.

He rebuked them with such authority, it was as if God Himself were speaking. They stopped jeering, and arguing. All they did was grab their instruments and run.

After they left, Jesus asked where Anna was laying. We took Him to her room. He knelt down beside her and took hold of her hand. Her pale blue-gray skin instantly was changed to a healthy pink. Then He spoke very soothingly; very softly. "My precious Little Lamb, arise."

And her eyes opened! She smiled. She was alive!! I was ecstatic! I wanted to dance! I wanted to shout! Tears rolled down my face. And you should have seen my wife! She was beside herself with joy...

Then Jesus, right before leaving, turned and said, "Tell no man what happened here today."

Tell no man? How can I "tell no man?" My Anna was dead, and now she is alive...because of Jesus. And I will, I must, tell the world that Jesus, the carpenter's son from Nazareth, is the Son of the Living God who heals and who restores.

Yes, I will worship Jesus. Forever.

What will you do?
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Monologue #4. My friend, Jonah, sang the Don Francisco song, "Gotta Tell Somebody", the story of Jairus, when the monologue had been finished. It really touched hearts and caught truly spiritual attention. What a joy!

3 comments:

A Joyful Noise said...

The answer - Jesus is always the answer. Again your story telling is extreemly moving and precious.

This is try #3 to write the letters to prove I am not a robot.

Gayle said...

I thought of the same song when I read this reading today. I saw him in a small concert and he sang this song. It was powerfully moving. I loved this reading today.

caryjo said...

Don Francisco has been one of my favorites for over 30 years. His words are so truthful. Have been blessed to see him, too. Glad you thought of this song. Made the two blend together well, I thought.

BTW, if you ever want to email me, do it. Have some things I want to drop into you re: where you live and my family situation re: the NW. I'm a "free-oriented" woman, believe me.