“When Jesus came down from the mountain, great crowds followed him. And then a leper approached, did him homage, and said, ‘Lord, if you wish, you can make me clean.’” (Matthew 8:1)
The miracles of Jesus are pretty radical stuff, and most of us know that, in a way, it was even more radical to touch a leper. Jesus had to go well beyond the conventional wisdom and appropriate religious practice of His day to do that. In that regard, we may not be able to make miracles happen, but we can follow His example.
There is someone in my life who reminds me of this willingness to go beyond safe structures and comfortable boundaries in order to be present to others. I have seen him do this with the sick and suffering in Haiti, and I have also seen him do this in his everyday world, whether it is with the local social outcast or with someone who is just plain boring to be around. He is my husband. Just yesterday he invited me along on a business transaction. The person he was working with had personal issues and memory problems. I would have had a hard time keeping my composure, but not Paul. As she rambled and fumbled, he was more than patient and very respectful. It is humbling to be in the presence of that kind of love.