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Christian Living

Spiritual Life

Jesus Christ, M.D.

“He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.” Psalm 147:3 ESV

The fragility of our humanity is visible from birth. The moment we are born, nurses rush to bundle us in warm blankets, checking our vital signs and making us cry to assure we can. Anxious parents counting our fingers and toes await our return to their arms. Their hearts bursting with joy and fear ... this little life now totally dependent upon them.

I’ve learned the hard way that the anxiety of parenting doesn’t end here. It only gets harder. The older they get the more we worry. The more we worry the older we get.

With four children I’ve been through my share of knee scrapes and colds. But I’ve also seen the scarier stuff. Our middle son has asthma and found it really hard to fight off germs. He literally kept strep throat for six months once. Our eldest son was once hospitalized with fluid in his abdominal cavity and an acute illness that was extremely serious. Our newest baby was born with a hole in his heart, though through prayer and by grace it closed up just weeks after birth.

And while all of this sounds scary, working with a children’s charity for so many years I’ve learned that even the things that scare me are trivial. Because I see so much sickness, the doctor’s office isn’t a place that I enjoy. In fact, I don’t even think of it when they are healthy, but when my kids get sick, someone breaks out in a mystery rash or someone spikes a fever – I want to know what’s going on. I forget about the movie I’m watching and I set aside my copy of People and I realize I need the doctor.

When I face these moments, I think of how eloquently Jesus compared our physical lives to our spiritual bodies. Looking across at His listeners, Jesus declared,

 “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. Go and learn what this means: ‘I desire mercy, and not sacrifice.’ For I came not to call the righteous, but sinners.”  Matthew 9:12-13 ESV

When things are going our way and anxiety is far from us, we are happy to curl up on the couch of life, read our favorite book, and sip a cup of warm tea. The ordinary way of life we live can grow so comfortable we don’t see the signs we need the doctor. Before we know it we have become too busy to pray, too tired to help others. We stop going in for regular checkups.

When Jesus spoke to the masses it is easy to assume He spoke to the lost. And He did. But He also spoke to those who are found who, like we all do from time to time, forget we are not perfect. Our flaws are many. Our hearts and thoughts fail us. Our bodies become frail and weary.

We all need the Doctor, those with spiritual sniffles and those with “heart” attacks. None of us can turn up our noses at the other - we are all sinners. God wants us to be merciful to one another, remembering we are all products of imperfection.

What shape is your spiritual body in? Whether you need a check-up, a stress test, major surgery, a first-time appointment or just want to stop in to pick His brain ...

The Doctor is in and He always accepts walk-ins!

Copyright © 2011 Brooke Keith. Used by permission.

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