One interruption can be the benefit of another
A pastor tells the story of how he was interrupted by a phone call at a youth meeting where he was leading a Bible study. The pastor admitted that he felt annoyed being interrupted at a critical moment when he was coming to the main point of the study and the young people were following him intently. He was gone for the rest of the meeting. Some members of the group expressed their annoyance that the pastor had even answered his phone. The pastor came back just as everyone was leaving and told them that an unknown young man had been on the line. He had decided to take his own life but wanted to give someone – anyone – one last chance at arguing why he should continue to live. The interruption to the Bible study interrupted and stopped this young man’s intentions (Vince Gerhardy).
An interruption is usually seen as a disturbance or putting an important task on hold for something that is insignificant. Even though we do not like interruptions, they are a fact of live. In fact, God interrupted eternity to create and indulge in the human project. Couples interrupt their single lives to get married. The also place their married lives on hold to undertake raring children. If we look carefully, we might find value in every interruption.
Luke 8: 41-56:
In the books of Matthew and Luke, an important story is told of a man name Jairus. It begins with Jesus in the midst of a massive crowd, so big was the crowd that Matthew describes it as one that could crush Jesus. The headline of the story could be a church leader who wants healing for his daughter who was near death. What makes the story fascinating is that Jairus a powerful figure, is desperate, and is facing the death of his daughter. References show that Jairus was well-connected, important and wealthy. Luke wrote that he fell down at Jesus’ feet and begged him to save his daughter’s life. These pressures might have made Jairus’s situation high priority for Jesus.
I know if my precious daughter was sick to the point of death, the first doctor I encountered would have to treat her like the president. However, as Jesus is in motion on his way to the religious leader’s home, He was interrupted: Now a woman, having a flow of blood for twelve years, who had spent all her livelihood on physicians and could not be healed by any, came from behind and touched the border of His garment (Luke8: 44). And it states that he immediately stopped. The scripture above also reveals that she was instantly healed. If she was immediately restored, why is Jesus stopping when there is a more pressing need?
Can you imagine, your 15-year-old daughter, in her youthful innocence, close to death. You leave the house to find help. As you exit the door, she was gasping for air; she seems very close to her last breath. You rush out of the house! Minutes later, you find a doctor, but he is in a busy supermarket shopping. You manage to get to him, and he agrees to come with you to help your child recover. But as he makes his way through the crowded aisles, he is engaging patients of his who are already well. He stops to make small gossip while your child is about to die. And could you imagine that the doctor, in a crowded supermarket asking, who touched me?
Why is Jesus creating a story within the story? Jesus, why unnecessary drama? A life is at stake, why is that not the priority?
Jesus interrupts to serve low class people
Here is the thing: Jesus has no priorities as it relates to humans.
He said the first shall be last and the last first. One would think, Jairus the church official would have more status in the eyes of God than a no-name woman. But there is no Jew or Gentile, male or female, bound or free in the eyes of Jesus. Jesus interrupted his forward progress to set the playing field level. His point: Jairus the well-to-do leader was never more important than that poor little woman. And for those of us who believe that we are of a royal priesthood and chosen generation, I have news for you. Be very careful, for those who belong to the holy nation in Jesus’ kingdom must look like servants. Jesus stopped because unimportant people are precious to him. In Jesus’ house, in his kingdom, in his economy, you must be a servant to enter. There are no levels of Christians in God’s home, only levels of service.
Jesus loves to interrupt to serve sinners
Even though the woman was small and insignificant, she had committed an egregious offense. In Jewish culture menstrual/vaginal blood represented the most hideous form of uncleanness. The perception in that culture is she had the potential to infect anybody or thing that she touched, and she touched Jesus’s clothes (Walton & Keener). That is why Jesus stopped. He stopped because something unusual or that was not supposed to happen had occurred: Instead of that woman contaminating Jesus, he cleansed her. And that interrupted his progress.
My Jesus interrupted his journey to set the record straight. And the record is that his grace is greater than my sin (Romans 5:20). It did not matter if the woman had blood flowing all over and more, his blood is sufficient. There would never be any amount of blood or contamination from that woman that could infect Jesus. In the same way our sins are never too much that his blood could not wash it away. So be confident that your sin, regardless of its magnitude, can be forgiven. Jesus’ interruption interrupts my guilt of every past sin.
The little girl was 12 years old, the little lady had a 12-year-old problem, but it did not matter. Young sinner or old sin, Jesus is equally able.
Call: whatever moral vulnerability you may have Jesus will interrupt to forgive you (Luke 5:20). So today, why not express you regret for those past and current moral violations you have committed?