Can’t I Do This?
Jesus asked his name. He responded, “the Crowd” (Calvin Miller, in The Singer). He was not himself…had not been for quite some time. In those long ago days when he was himself, he would never thought of making the cemetery his home…of cutting his unclothed flesh with sharp rocks…of screaming uncontrollably day and night…of living as a wild beast. But that was before he became “the Crowd”…before the coming of the devil’s henchmen. But the winds of glorious change had been blowing…causing Jesus’ boat to land at the exact right spot by the seaside to allow a “chance” meeting. Jesus had a word with the demons. The Crowd left, unable to resist our Lord, and the man was one again. Jesus restored his unity. He was human again. Clothes were found as Jesus restored his dignity. His mind returned to him, as Jesus restored his sanity.
The occupants of the nearby city and the countryside, seem to have been more upset over the loss of pigs than happy over the deliverance of a fellow human. They beg Jesus to depart from them. Can you imagine that? But the new human has a different request. He begs to go with Jesus. But the Lord has other plans for him. “Go to your house and to your friends and tell them how much the Lord has done for you and how good He has been to you.” And so, off goes this new human, singing redemption’s song of joyful praise to God for all the glorious good he had received. And others began to pick up the melody and learn the song.
And I was thinking about this…how I have sometimes made it seem so difficult and awkward to spread the gospel to others. Or how I have made it cold and formal in the way I tell it. Jesus surely did great things for “the Crowd” when He gave him back his life…all new. But hasn’t He done great things for me too? Is it only the man miraculously dispossessed of demons who had good news to share? Don’t I also? In fact, don’t I have even better…yea, far better news to share?! For I didn’t only live among tombs, I was buried in a tomb because of my sins. Jesus didn’t only give me back my sanity…He gave me life eternal!
Was it too much that Jesus asked of the man? Did He ask him to go and explain Daniel’s visions to his family and friends? No. As vital and essential as Bible study is, at this point, Jesus was looking for a way into the hearts of people who were shutting Him out. He needed our hero, to simply tell his story. And it did good too. For later on when Jesus returns to the area, He is given a totally different reception.
Can’t I do this? Can you do this? Is there still a place…a need for this kind of commission? I think so. Balance this however you might need to. Why don’t we let others know of the great things our Lord has done for us?