And all the people were trying to touch Him, for power was coming from Him and healing them all. – Luke 6:19
Imagine the scene: A celebrity is coming to your town. Everyone gathers at the place of his expected arrival to see him. He steps out of the limo and people edge closer to the barriers, hoping for a glimpse at him, hoping to touch him or receive a recognition from him. It’s almost as if some of his fame, his money or his greatness will rub off on them if they can just get close enough…
In spite of all the fans, all the crowds that press close to touch him, a celebrity leads a pretty lonely life. There are few people he can trust enough to let into his intimate inner circle. Who can he tell his deepest feelings to without fear of seeing a best-seller on the stands in 6 months proclaiming all those secrets to the world? Who will still remain close to him when the media recognition fades and he isn’t a public icon anymore?
Things haven’t changed much in the 2000 years since Jesus walked the earth. He was a celebrity of the day – a great teacher who traveled the countryside expounding on the scriptures, healing and feeding people. Word of mouth preceded him so that when he arrived in a town, crowds gathered around him, calling out to him and pressing in to get as close as possible to this great man.
But the problem was that many people only sought him for what they could receive from him.They wanted to feel Christ’s power, to see his miracles first-hand – maybe eve to receive one for themselves. If he was the Messiah, he could deliver them from the tyranny of Rome and set up his kingdom here on earth. And if they could just get close enough to him, they could have a piece of the power, wealth and prestige of his kingdom.
They didn’t care about building a deep and lasting relationship with him. We know that because the minute the tide of public opinion turned on Christ, all but his closest followers vanished.
God created us with a need for intimacy – especially intimacy with him, to enjoy his presence forever and to glorify him. He wants us to know his power and to see his glory. But more than that he wants us to know his loving heart, to know his ways and not just his acts.
Father, help me to seek your very heart each day, deeply and intimately, creating such a solid bond between us that even the hard times cannot shake my love for you.