Monday of the 3rd Week of Lent
2 Kgs 5:1-15
“…if the prophet had told you to do something extraordinary, would you not have done it?”
When I was in my early twenties, I had my heart broken. It was awful. In hindsight, there was no way that the relationship could have lasted, and I knew it. And so, after crying about it for a bit, I worked on healing. It wasn’t easy when my mind was constantly mulling about it, and my heart was still aching. I couldn’t let go. And then one day, at the point of exasperation, I fell on my knees and asked God to heal me. I surrendered myself to Him, along with my tears and my broken heart. It was slow-going but I gradually picked up the pieces. And finally, one day I realized that I had stopped thinking about it and it was liberating.
We all have some sin in our lives that prevents us from moving forward. Sometimes, we may not even realise it, that it sits there like a chip on our shoulder. Sometimes, it becomes so much a part of our lives that we even deny that there is a blockage. In my case, I was hurt and upset. I thought that I was very much the victim (and therefore blameless!) and therefore ‘deserved’ justice and healing, but I was angry and resentful too. It took me a while to realise it, but healing cannot happen if our hearts are not ready for it yet. Grace and anger cannot co-exist in the same heart at the same time. Healing is grace from God, and He wants to heal us. Recall the other healing of the leper by Jesus (Matt 8:2-3): “Lord, if you are willing, you can make me clean,” cried the leper. And Jesus replied, “I am willing” and healed him immediately. Note though, that the leper knelt before Jesus with a humble heart, acknowledging that he was not worthy by saying if it was God’s will to heal him, then let it be so. He did not say “I am worthy of healing. I deserve healing.” He knew that Jesus was capable of healing him, it was a question of whether the leper would be found wanting or worthy in Jesus’ eyes.
In a similar vein, Naaman’s heart was full of pride. He thought himself an important and powerful man (which he was, in mortal’s eyes). He expected something more, some sort of great event that would herald the healing. But in God’s eyes, we are all the same. No one is more important than the other. So, when he finally set aside his pride and did as Elisha instructed, he was healed.
The healing itself is simple. And maybe like Naaman, we can’t accept that healing can be so easy. The hard part is our unwillingness to let go of the things that prevent us from accepting the healing. Healing enables us to move forward to what God has in store for us. We cannot drive forward by looking at the rearview mirror. The past is where it needs to be — in the past. Isaiah 43:18-19 says, “Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing!” We cannot fathom this new thing if our hearts are focused on the things that are hurting us. We need to let it go. Our hearts need to undergo a conversion like Naaman. Like the leper in Matthew, we need to humble ourselves before God. When we have laid it all at His feet, then will we truly be ready to claim God’s grace and accept God’s healing.
(Today’s OXYGEN by Annette Soo)
Prayer: Lord, we lay bare our lives before you. Search us oh Lord, and where we may be found wanting, help us to realise it. Help us to let go of the things that hurt us and thereafter heal us, we pray, to make us whole again.
Thanksgiving: Lord, you have made the healing of our hearts and souls so simple and available to all of us, regardless of our station in life and most importantly, our worthiness. We thank you Lord, for healing us. May we too strive to be vessels of healing for our brothers and sisters.