In Luke 13:10-17, we see Jesus teaching in the synagogue on the Sabbath when suddenly he saw a woman who had been bent over double for eighteen years and was unable to stand up straight. Jesus called her over to him, touched her and healed her.
10 On a Sabbath Jesus was teaching in one of the synagogues, 11 and a woman was there who had been crippled by a spirit for eighteen years.She was bent over and could not straighten up at all. 12 When Jesus saw her, he called her forward and said to her, “Woman, you are set free from your infirmity.” 13 Then he put his hands on her, and immediately she straightened up and praised God.
14 Indignant because Jesus had healed on the Sabbath, the synagogue leader said to the people, “There are six days for work. So come and be healed on those days, not on the Sabbath.”
15 The Lord answered him, “You hypocrites! Doesn’t each of you on the Sabbath untie your ox or donkey from the stall and lead it out to give it water? 16 Then should not this woman, a daughter of Abraham, whom Satan has kept bound for eighteen long years, be set free on the Sabbath day from what bound her?”
17 When he said this, all his opponents were humiliated, but the people were delighted with all the wonderful things he was doing. Luke 13:10-17 New International Version (NIV)
You would think that everyone in the synagogue that day would be happy and join the woman in praising God. But the leader in charge of the synagogue was very angry that Jesus had healed the woman on the Sabbath day. Of course, Jesus knew that rules are important, but he knew that the needs of people are more important. And this is a lesson you and I need to learn. That whenever we see someone in need, the most important thing is to help them, no matter when or where it may be.
May God help us to follow the example that Jesus has set for us, to help us place the needs of others ahead of any rules we may have. And for us who may have been bent with pain, be it physical, emotional, or spiritual and are unable to stand firm and upright, may Jesus lift you up from the pains and burdens of life so that you can raise our minds and hearts in thanksgiving to God.
Peace and Joy
Written by Rev. Fr. Courage Dogbey