Word for the day by Christian Education Forum
The Holistic Healing that Christ Gives (Medical Mission Sunday)
I John 3:17 “If anyone has material possessions and sees a brother or sister in need but has no pity on them, how can the love of God be in that person?”
When Adam and Eve sinned, God’s perfect creation was subjected to disease, decay, and brokenness. Romans 8:20-22 speaks of how creation was subjected to decay in hope that with the revelation of the son of God and the restoration that Jesus brings in His second coming, creation itself will be delivered from the bondage of decay and brought into the glorious freedom of the children of God. Disease, poverty, hunger, pain, and relational brokenness are all a result of the entry of sin into the world.
During Jesus’ earthly ministry, he attended to both the spiritual and physical needs of those to whom He ministered. He healed many people who had physical illnesses and proclaimed the ultimate spiritual healing that could only be accomplished through faith in His sacrificial death on the cross. In today’s passage, Jesus highlights the importance of attending to the material and physical needs of others. He explains that ministering to those who are hungry, thirsty, strangers, in need of clothing, sick or in prison is the work that He expects from of all His followers.
In today’s theme verse, Jesus’s disciple John reminds his readers that proof of the presence of authentic love of God in a believer is the ability to see the material needs of others and to minister to those. The sign of a true follower of Christ is love and compassion for others, both for their spiritual and physical needs. True worship of God and Christian service sees the whole person and the entirety of their needs. As we seek to follow and honor God, may we use our gifts, resources, and abilities to minister to all of the needs of those around us and let us ask God to open our eyes to the opportunities for ministry that He lays in our path. For those who have the privilege of working within the medical community, there are unique opportunities to engage in the healing Ministry of Christ through their vocation, but this can be most effective when coupled with a commitment to pray for those whom God has placed in their care asking that He may meet their spiritual needs, as well as their physical needs.
Dear Heavenly Father, we thank You that as Your children, You have given us the opportunity to be Your hands and feet in this world, to share the love of Christ with those whom You have brought into our lives. Open our eyes to see their needs, fill us with Your love for them, and help us to use the gifts and resources You have given us to minister to those around us.
THOUGHT FOR THE DAY
When we participate in ministry, and particularly in healing ministries, we participate in the work of Jesus Christ who is the Great Physician.
Dr. Julie Sadhu
Bethel MTC, Frankfort, IL
Christian Education Forum, Diocese of NAE of the Mar Thoma Church