Today, I am thinking about the story of the “four lepers.” I am presently in Asia where masses of people swarm like an ocean of fish. Each one has a face, a name, a personality, a family, a need. Jesus. Why is missions becoming the lost subject in Christianity with these billions yet in darkness?
Now, we come to the “leper lessons.” They were starving outside the gate of a besieged, starving city. They represent me, you, all Christians. Their story should be our story.
Here are four lessons I learn from them:
These four dying men reached a moment of desperation: “If we go into the city we will die of starvation. If we surrender to the enemy they may kill us also. What do we have to lose?”
This is where the world is: a pessimistic view of life. People are pessimistic about the future: “Who cares? Why live? Why not? Life is short…live it up. What is the meaning of more days?”
What is the PURPOSE of it all?
They decided to risk it all and visit the enemy camp. When they arrived, it was VACATED! The enemy had fled in the night, frightened by a loud sound from God.
What a picture of us. IN CHRIST, WE HAVE FOUND RICHES. Riches of grace. They found gold, jewelry, clothing, food beyond description. We have found “true riches.”
We are drowning in God’s goodness. Spiritual food is everywhere. Podcasts, blogs, churches, conferences, Christian bookstores and small groups.
Suddenly, one of them had a thought. “This is not right. The city is starving and we are feasting. They are eating each other’s children and we have become overnight millionaires. We must go back and tell them.”
I sat yesterday with a young missionary from Texas who has just spent 10 years in Afghanistan as a missionary. His Dad is a multi-millionaire…and he is in AFGHANISTAN?
One leper said to the other, “It’s not right. We must go tell them. In the city they are killing each other over crumbs and we have a spiritual Costco!”
When they returned to the city, they shouted over the wall that there were untold riches just over the hill. No one believed them! The king said it was a trap. They finally sent two horses out who confirmed the amazing story was true.
Prepare yourself for those who reject your ministry. They suspect an intellectual trap, a waste of time to pursue. Those who are stuck in their criticism are everywhere. “Come see for yourself.” Spend your life telling others the good news. In America, in Africa, in Asia, millions wait for this hope you and I are swimming in.
After all, WE are the lepers. This is OUR story. Pray, give, go. Use whatever means you have to get the good news to the city.
Those are the “4 lessons from lepers."