Who Will Lead the Way Home?

By Tanja

Recently I went to visit a church that I don’t usually go to, and the pastor preached a message. One of the real-life experiences that he told was similar to what I had experienced in my life too. His story involved getting lost when he was a young boy, and on the way to finding his destination of being found, he was helped by the police and got ice cream. The reason he told this story was to show that when people are lost without God- their feelings of being lost are evident, it is a sinking feeling.

I understood precisely this feeling of being lost, for I felt the same in my story.  Can I tell you my story?

I was a child of eight or nine living in Japan. There was a place that the kids loved to go, and this site was called “Pom- Pom- Yama”, it was a mountain that had rock pools, the water was crisp and fresh.

I think all of us kids knew the town we were in very well; I think there still are traces of the map of the place in my mind even today.

Sometimes we would go to the mountain for our swim with our bikes.

One day, after a swim on at Pom Pom Yama, I was riding my bike confidently with everyone else. I must have been a little ahead of everyone else because I took a turn and was left on my own.

I kept riding my bike down the mountain. It was strange no one was coming after me, but I kept riding hoping I had my directions right. When I got down to the village below, I could not recognise the place.

I am lost?

I just don’t know where to turn!

The feeling was frightening.

I had come to a Japanese lady’s house and possibly tried to explain I was lost. She gave me ice cream and called the police. Even though I had ice cream. I was scared, uncomfortable and not happy. But I was comforted just little by ice cream.

I’m not sure how the policeman knew how to bring me home. I lived near the shopping street. I suppose that’s all the information I knew how to give. No address. But I did get back. The policeman got me home.

When I heard the message of the pastor I mentioned at the beginning, I could relate to an experience of being lost. The experience of being lost, especially as a child is not comfortable.

Jesus is the one who leads and brings us home, in a spiritual sense. Jesus is said to be the way, the truth and the life.

John 14:6

“Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.””

Maybe we don’t understand how Jesus does it. Like in my story; my policeman was able to save me from being lost in a village in Japan, even though I didn’t give him much detail.

Isaiah 53:6

“All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned—every one—to his own way;and the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all.”

Jesus might be like that strong, brave policeman, who can guide us home to the Father where we belong. He is the good Shephard of your soul. If you’re lost, let Him help you find your way back home.

 

 

 

 

 

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The Long Wait for Healing

The woman who was blind bumped a crippled man. “Will you watch where you’re going, woman!” She had struggled to get through the crowd and now she was caught in a position that was uncomfortable. Even if I just fall into the Pool of Bethesda, that might heal me. She thought. She physically couldn’t see. She was surrounded by people just like her, who needed some type of cure in their bodies.

“The angel hasn’t come yet!”announced the crippled man. “When the angel comes to stir the waters….” He stopped to clear his throat..”When the angel..whoever gets in first, gets healed.They get healed. That’s what they get,..” The woman who had bumped him started to whimper.

“I….” some more tears came, “I can’t see the water.” The man looked at the woman and then at the pool’s water. He was also hopeful to get in the water.

“Such beautiful water.”

On the other side of the crowd on the fourth portico lay another man who had been sick for 38 years. He was in doubt that he could be healed, since it had been a long time to wait for this. There had been some days when he had asked someone to move him to the pool. No one did. No one cared to help. It was a miserable type of ‘hospital’, everyone around him was too weak to help. The man just lay on his cheek, his mind filled with nothingness.

The Pools of Bethesda were quiet at this time, the waters in the pool would move every so often and the sick gathered around would groan. They cried out sometimes in agony. It was a quiet moment, there was stillness in the atmosphere when Jesus entered the scene.

Jesus scanned the crowd with much compassion. Jesus had been in Jerusalem for a feast. Now he was here assessing the pool area. He noticed the man lying down on his cheek. He could tell that this man had had a long journey with his sickness.

‘It’s been a long time!’ Jesus whispered about the man. The man could tell that someone was peering over him. “Do you want to get well?” Were the words Jesus spoke. “Huh?” The man was stunned.

Jesus touched his cheek and started his question again, “Do you want…”
“I heard you…” The man spoke.”No one’s going to help me! They don’t want to help me into that water…and if I try to get into that pool, someone takes my place!”

Jesus smiled at the man. “Take up your mat and walk!” The appearance and health of the man changed instantly. He was well. He was healed. Excitedly he jumped to his feet, rolled up his mat and started walking away.

He was stopped by men who had strong Jewish beliefs and traditions of the Sabbath. There was not much activity occurring in Jerusalem because of the Sabbath day.

The men insisted that he move no further. “Who allowed you to walk with your mat?”

“The man who made me well! He did!” “Who was that?”
“I don’t know!”

The source of the man’s healing seemed a mystery to him. Who had healed him? He really wasn’t sure who had done it. But at least he hadn’t needed to step into the Pools of Bethesda. He was healed. He was elated. As to why the Jewish men were asking him these questions, perplexed him.

Jesus found the man later in the temple.

“You are now well! Don’t go astray anymore.”

“It was you. You healed me?” The man recognized Jesus.”Who are you?”

“Jesus.”

“Jesus, Jesus has healed me!” He turned away. “The one who healed me is Jesus,” he proclaimed as he went a way. “Jesus, the miraculous one. He healed me!”

Note: Find and read this story in John 5:1-17, this is a dramatized and partly fictional interpretation of the story.