While Jesus was still speaking, some men came from the house of Jairus, the synagogue ruler, “Your daughter is dead,” they said. “Why bother the teacher any more?” Mark 5:35
About two years ago, a family went to Disney World in Orlando. There, the youngest of the crew spotted one of the dressed-up characters, Snow White. If you’ve been to Disney, you know that children simply mob those characters. That was certainly true for this beautiful lady. She was hugged; she was photographed. But the little boy I’m talking about kept his distance. He wanted to get close like everybody else, but he was afraid. Suppose Snow White didn’t like him. Suppose Snow White told him to go away.
So he stayed where he was, and he stared. It could have ended that way, but Snow White saw that little boy and worked her way over to him. Soon she stood by his side, bent down, and gave that little boy the hug he wanted and needed so desperately. After the hug, that boy knew, goodness everyone knew, he was worth loving.
Christians know that because Jesus has taken our place, carried our sins, and died our death, we are restored to harmony with our Father in heaven. Jesus was God moving close to us, indeed becoming one of us, so that we might be saved from our sins and know that God cares.
We, who have been called by the Holy Spirit’s power, know, as the Father’s adopted children, we have been given the opportunity to come to Him in prayer. Even as a good earthly father wants to hear from his children, so our Heavenly Father, wants us to speak to Him. He has invited our requests, our thanks, our worship. Still, there are many folks, like our boy, who stand at the edge of the spiritual crowd, holding back from those close talks with the Lord. Like the crowd in the text above, some say, “My problem is too small and trivial. Why should I bother God?”
There are other reasons you might hang back. You might think you are independent enough to take care of every situation. You may even doubt if God cares about you. If any of these describe how you feel, please know that God wants to hear from you. He, who sent His only-begotten Son into this world to save you, wants to hear about the trivial, the terrible, the touching, the tremendous things in your life.
Excerpt from The Lutheran Hour sermon preached on July 20, 2003
THE PRAYER: Dear God, I have been standing in the background looking at all the things that I can have if only I step toward you, but I'm afraid. I'm afraid of the unknown, rejection, unworthiness, inadequacies, and failures. I've gone as far as I can go, Lord. Please send help. Thank you for being my "Snow White" and coming forth to rescue me from my sins and myself. In Jesus' Name. Amen.
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