I’m living in the middle of a story that is causing me a lot of anxiety. I can’t see what is happening, I have no control over the particulars. I don’t know how this will end – or when. I am keeping an open prayer line to God and running to it often when panic wants to raise its ugly head. Somebody reading this can relate. I know a father with a demon-possessed son could too. Please take a moment and read Mark 9:17-27 to get the scope of the story.
When we read accounts in the Bible today, as Paul Harvey said, we know “the rest of the story.” But the people in the story didn’t. Think about this from the father’s perspective – in real-time – as he stands before Jesus with pleading eyes, “If you can do anything, take pity on us and help us” (Mark 9:22). Stay in the moment as we see Jesus turn to the child and speak with authority, “I command you to come out of him and never enter him again” (v. 25). Watch as “the spirit shrieked, convulsed him violently and came out” (v. 26)” But wait, what did Jesus do? The boy looks dead – like a corpse! The father brought his boy to Jesus and Jesus made everything worse.
Now, freeze the scene right here and consider this: just as the father lived out his story in real-time, you and I are also living out our story without the advantage of a written script that tells us how it all ends. All we know is, right now, at this moment, the anxiety is high.
“But Jesus . . .” these are the most precious words in the Bible to me. “But Jesus took [the boy] by the hand and lifted him to his feet” v. 27). Wonder of wonders, the boy is not dead – he is alive – and healed! He runs into his father’s arms with a smile of triumph. His father bends to kiss his son’s head with a look of amazement and Joy.
May I remind you not to give up on Jesus? He can see the end from the middle. That moment when all seems lost, just as it was for this father, might be the moment just before all is found. Bring your need to Jesus, give Him room to work, and don’t lose hope. Beloved, your story isn’t over yet.