Scripture: Mark 5:1-20
Key verses: (15-20) They came to Jesus and saw the demoniac sitting there, clothed and in his right mind, the very man who had had the legion; and they were afraid. Those who had seen what had happened to the demoniac and to the swine reported it. Then they began to beg Jesus to leave their neighborhood. As he was getting into the boat, the man who had been possessed by demons begged him that he might be with him. But Jesus refused, and said to him, “Go home to your friends, and tell them how much the Lord has done for you, and what mercy he has shown you.” And he went away and began to proclaim in the Decapolis how much Jesus had done for him; and everyone was amazed.
Reflection: This is a commission to the healed demoniac and to us — Go home to your friends and tell them what God has done for you. We have a story to tell. Each of us and all of us have been transformed by the love of God. It may not be as crazy as this story, but our story is part of God’s story.
Everyone was amazed at the man’s proclamation. In verse 20 the focus is not on the healing but on the proclamation. His testimony is transformative for his neighbors because they can see his faith in the miracle. The man wanted to follow Jesus, but Jesus told him to go home and tell his story. The most effective preaching is done by those who simply tell how much Jesus has done for them.
What is your story?
This week, we are in Montreat with 1,000 youth who are hearing the Word proclaimed but are also discerning how to go home and tell our story. God has moved in our lives but it often does not feel significant. However, the transformation is real. It is a holy change that has brought order, identity and peace to a life of chaos. Isn’t that the same story as the demonic? In the midst of a chaotic and alienated life Jesus brought peace to this tormented man. The contrast between the man possessed and cured is striking.
I wonder if people can see the transformation in our lives. It might help if we proclaimed with great joy what Jesus has done and is doing in our lives. We are working on how we tell our story, and we cannot wait to hear yours.
Prayer: O God, thank you for what you have done and are doing in my life. You have brought deep and abiding joy. As a witness for you may I be willing to share my story in such a way that will draw others to your love and to your grace. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
Author: Michelle Thomas-Bush
[Scripture quotations are from New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright © 1989 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved].