A man with leprosy came and knelt before Jesus and said, “If You are willing, You can make me clean.” Jesus reached out and touched him saying, “I am willing” (Matthew 8:1-4)
My heart collides with those four simple words…”IF You are willing…” How many times have I asked that in my most secret place, not even able to verbalize it most of the time. I KNOW God is willing to do it for others, but for ME…if… a small word that holds so many things in its two letters. Am I worth it? Would He do it for me? Am I good enough to be noticed? Or am I too messed up? Am I even important enough?
The disease of leprosy causes one to be an outcast, alone, unwanted, unclean. For us today, leprosy may represent our sin, our brokenness, our messed up lives. So the question is, will I come like the bold yet fearful leper and kneel at the feet of the Father, asking, “You can clean me up if You are willing” or will I let the crowds yelling “unclean… broken” intimidate me, keeping me from possible help? Will I let the fear of a “no” answer keep me an “outcast”? All too often I have asked… expecting a “no” because of the way I see myself. I wonder if the leper was scared to death to ask Jesus; he had nothing to lose but a whole lot to gain. Jesus reached out and touched him, knowing the disease was highly contagious. Oh how we long for such a touch- someone willing to touch our messy, contagious places. To feel the touch of LOVE, but then to hear “I am willing”. His heart must have missed quite a few beats at those precious words "I AM WILLING!"
I wonder if we were still long enough, if we’d hear those same words “I am willing” whispered to us. We get so noisy, rehearsing why we are not worth it, why we don’t deserve His attention along with his touch. Will you join me, kneeling in front of the Savior… quietly… listening… Do you hear the soft voice telling you, as He touches your face, “I am willing…I am willing to clean you up!”