01/20/M – Willing and Able

Genesis 23:1-20; Matthew 8:1-4; Psalms 9:19-20; Proverbs 4:1-6

NT: “Right away a man with leprosy came up and knelt before him, saying, “Lord, if you are willing, you can make me clean.” Reaching out his hand, Jesus touched him, saying, “I am willing; be made clean.” Immediately his leprosy was cleansed.” (‭‭Matthew‬ ‭8:2-3‬ ‭CSB‬‬)

In our church, we hear this phrase often: “God (Father, Son, and Holy Spirit) is both willing and able.” We see that here in this encounter with Jesus. The leper came up to Jesus (something he was not allowed to do) because he believed that Jesus was able to cleanse him of his leprosy and heal him. He didn’t know if Jesus would be willing. Jesus was willing – and he reached out His hand and touched the leper. By doing that, Jesus contracted the leper’s defilement and passed to the leper His purity. Immediately the leprosy vanished and demonstrated that Jesus was both willing and able: willing to associate and save the vilest of offenders, and able to heal diseases and cleanse people of sin. Jesus is always willing and able, but to experience His willingness and ability, we have to first be willing to come to Him and come to Him in faith.

Proverbs: “When I was a son with my father, tender and precious to my mother, he taught me and said: “Your heart must hold on to my words. Keep my commands and live. Get wisdom, get understanding; don’t forget or turn away from the words from my mouth. Don’t abandon wisdom, and she will watch over you; love her, and she will guard you.” (‭‭Proverbs‬ ‭4:3-6‬ ‭CSB‬‬)

These are words that were passed down from King David to his son Solomon – and I am sure these were words that David heard from the Lord as he sought after His heart. “Keep my commands and live.” Our Father is willing to watch over us, lead us, guard us… and He is well able to protect us and provide for us. And He gives us the freedom to follow Him or go our own way. His covering is only extended to those who choose to follow Him – yet He is willing to receive any who repent from their own ways and begin following Him in faith. And as we follow Him, He is both willing and able to give us the grace to stay with Him.

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