A man at the age of fifty was relieved of his job. This was a job he has sacrificed a lot to protect and keep to the standards so as not to lose it but fate turned around when the bad eggs conspired against him to pull him down.
He was expelled over a situation he knows nothing about. This so much devastated him to the extent that he thought of committing suicide. Having planned how to execute such an abominable action. He told me that he decided to say a prayer of forgiveness and then hang himself. So that God may have mercy on Him.
He quietly opened the bible to search for psalm 51, immediately he opened the bible, the first page he saw was John 14:27 which says “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled”. He was deeply touched because this is the first time he has heard such a comforting statement, all the time he was suffering.
He tried to wave it away, the next chapter he saw himself again was Mathew 6:34 which says “Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.”. The words from the Lord began to sink deep into his troubled heart.
Then he rushed to psalms to fulfil his intention, as he opened the psalms, the next verse he saw was “in Psalm 46:1 which says “Cast your burden on the Lord, and he will sustain you; he will never permit the righteous to be moved.”
The man began to cry, for all these while, many have neglected him and now it is as if God is talking to him personally. He wept and decided to start life again.
When He shared this story with me, I was trapped in the emotion of joy. This is how God speaks to us every day. When Jesus speaks to us, lives and conditions transform.
The great motivator and preacher Norman Vincent Pearle says that the only way he relieved people from worry, depression, fear, negative mental attitude and infuse in them the supernatural power to conquer difficulties is to advise them to continually repeat “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me (Philippians 4:13).
This has made many see the power of Christ as real and believing in such reality made them surmount difficult situations.
Unclean to Clean.
The word that comes from the lord carries power and saves the sinner and damning soul. In today’s gospel, Jesus saves a man who is unclean. He is under demonic possession.
When Jesus enters Capernaum, He enters their synagogue to teach them. This gospel says that today’s encounter is in the synagogue. That means the devil also goes to church. But for one to deeply encounter a change, he needs an encounter with Jesus. An deep relationship and close encounter with him can change our pasts to good.
When the man who is under demonic possession sees Jesus, he immediately begins to shout. In essence, the demon could not withstand the power of His presence.
This encounter also teaches us that these spirits know and understand what happens whenever we approach God in prayer. This is the reason they will do everything to make us weak to pray. You can find it easy to do everything but at prayers you become weak. This shows that something is wrong.
Demons understand the power of prayers more than we do. In the gospel, they shout “we know you”. Therefore, they understand the power of Jesus Christ more than we do.
The first thing that the devil does to an unbeliever is to make him doubt the power of God. He will make you detest everything about God.
The demons shout saying “Have you come to destroy us? I know who you are: the Holy One of God.’ In essence, they are afraid of Jesus speaking to them. They know that when Jesus speaks, they are in trouble.
Then Jesus actually speaks to the demon and guess what; deliverance, change, power, liberation etc., follow immediately. When Jesus speaks to us, conditions change.
Possession indicates someone acting under an external influence which sometimes influences his or her actions. The man experiences deliverance when Jesus speaks. Therefore, when Jesus speaks to our conditions, great things happen.
Sometimes there are many things we would not have done but because of what we are passing through or the situation we are in, they compel us to do them.
There are actions we take especially when we are under economic, financial, and psychological constraints which under normal circumstances we wouldn’t have. Our best companion then is the word of God.
Secondly, the bible says that the man delivered was unclean and later cleaned. There are times we do not truly know how to come out of our sinful lives that have drained our souls. Always visit Jesus often, and allow Him to speak to you. Meet Him at the sacrament of confession, His words can save a damning soul.
When Jesus Speaks to Us.
Amid the troubled world, when we are uncertain of what might befall us in the future and afraid of the situation we are in, Jesus speaks to us in John 6:20, “do not be afraid, It is I”.
When we are passing through persecutions, Jesus speaks to us in Matthew 10:28, “do not be afraid of those who can only kill the body but not the soul.
Also, when we think our situation is impossible to surmount, Jesus speaks to us in Mark 9:23 that everything is possible for the one who believes.
When we are so guilty of our pasts, Jesus teaches us that God can still forgive us in Luke 23:43 and the story of the prodigal son in Luke 15;11-32.
When people wrong us and we do not want to forgive, Jesus speaks to us In Matthew 5:23-24 “Therefore if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there before the altar. First, go and reconcile to your brother; then come and offer your gift.”
Also, when we are so anxious about worldly possessions, Jesus teaches us to serve and to lord it over ourselves in Matthew 20:20-28.
When we are extremely tired of praying, Jesus speaks to us in Luke 22:39-46 “Get up and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. Etc.
When He speaks, it is always for our transformation and positive change. Also, when He speaks, and we apply them, significant things must happen. Let us always read His word and listen to Him. The word that comes from the Lord has saving power.
We need His Words.
We need to take his words as our daily partner to be able to surmount our challenges and keep ourselves clean. Peter needed the words of Jesus to walk on the water and he said, “ Lord if it is you, tell me to come to you on the water.”
The centurion needed His word for his servant to be healed and he said Lord, I do not deserve to have you come under my roof. But just say the word, and my servant will be healed (Matthew 8:8) and today immediately he speaks, the demon ran away, and people began to ask “what is in his words”?.
We Do not Regard the Word.
The problem we have is that we do not regard His word. Sometimes, we respect human beings and do whatever they say more than we respect the word of God.
And sometimes we obey our emotions, and personal desires more than we obey the word of God. We need his word always. When Jesus speaks to our hearts, we have to pay attention and listen. His word saves.
Be Like Jesus.
Finally, like Jesus let us also be an instrument of change and healing to people. The presence and the word of Jesus cleanse the unclean in today’s gospel.
Can our presence and words have significant effects anywhere we are? Also, can the words we speak touch and save souls from bondage?
Can our presence in an organization, family, community be a source of change and transformation to them or a source of evil and discord?
Also, can the people we meet be touched and change from unclean to clean by mere hearing from us?
We cannot do much of that if we do not arm ourselves with the word of God. For what one gives is what he has. As we go to Jesus, let us also be an instrument of change to others.
May God bless you dearest and give us the grace to obey his word, may He put in us that burning desire to listen to his word and put them into practice. Amen.