Pressing on even in the face of ridicule.

Mark 5:38-40a “When they came to the home of the synagogue leader, Jesus saw much commotion and weeping and wailing. He went inside and asked, ‘Why all this commotion and weeping? The child isn’t dead; she’s only asleep.’ The crowd laughed at him.”

Jairus, a ruler of the local synagogue, came to Jesus asking Him to lay hands on his daughter, who was dying. Jesus, moved with compassion for the man, followed him to the house where there were people mourning and weeping over the lost child. Jesus asked them why there was such a commotion and why all the crying because the girl was not dead but sleeping. After Jesus made that statement, the crowd of mourners turned on Him and mocked Him for saying she wasn’t dead but sleeping.

People are fickle. Plain and simple. They can change course as easy as flipping a light switch. One minute they are weeping and mourning, and the next minute they are laughing hysterically at Jesus for saying that an apparently dead girl was really just sleeping. On first glance, one might be quick to judge Him as they did; however, one would be wrong just as they were. Jesus knew that the little girl was sleeping in the sense that she was dead but not gone forever. He knew the Father would restore her life to her and hence not really be dead.

Sometimes when we step out in faith and do the “radical” thing for God, people are quick to judge us as fanatics or heretics. They don’t see the reality of the situation as God sees it, but they base their reality in what their senses relay to their brain. They live by the adage, “Perception is reality.” True Christians must not and cannot live their lives by such a mantra. Faith requires us to trust in an invisible God, who is able to call things that are not as though they were. Where people might see a dead little girl, God saw an opportunity to restore life in a girl, who would cause her parents to believe on the Lord Jesus the Messiah and live!

Don’t let people dictate to you how to behave and thus manipulate you and control you. Allow only the Spirit of God to dictate to you how to live your life. He may call on you to do some weird and radical things, as He did Ezekiel or Hosea in the OT times. Read their books and learn how radical was normal, everyday occurrences for them. Others have been called of God to do the seemingly impossible or fantastic only to be considered a fool or stupid by the world and thus ridiculed and persecuted for their faith in God. Remember that Paul and Peter both said that we would suffer for the cause of Messiah if we are truly followers of Jesus.

Father, how is it that what was once normal, courageous faith in You has become known as radical or extreme? You have always used the weak to defeat the strong or the foolish to confound the wise. Why do we have to consider living the true Christian life as radical? What is so radical about sharing the gospel with all nations? What is so extreme about standing up for what one believes in even to the point of death? The world is full of sinners dying for their just and unjust causes and beliefs. They don’t consider it radical but a normal part of everyday life. Help me to be a bold and courageous child of the living God and not be intimidated or prohibited from doing “radical” works for your kingdom. I dare to be different. It is part of who I am. I will make a stand for You in these last days and begin to do the works You’ve called me to do. No more cowering in a corner, so to speak. Charge on, Sir, I will follow. In Jesus’ name, Amen.