Tidings for Tuesday

And He touched her hand, and the fever left her, and she arose and ministered unto them. Matthew 8:15

Before they were saved, a couple we knew had no interest in helping anybody but themselves. They never gave money to help others, they never invited company into their house for a meal, they never showed any interest in being kind to anybody. The Gospel changed all that! After a confusing period of conviction of sin, both the man and woman trusted Christ. And their entire approach to others changed, especially their attitude toward the Christians. They became genuinely caring about others in many ways. They were hospitable and generous to people. They were the first to volunteer when help was needed, and the first to donate when money or materials were needed. Their kindness and generosity were wonderful to see. God’s salvation had not only saved their souls from hell but had also rescued their personalities from uselessness to others.

The healing of Peter’s mother-in-law in our text today is marked by the service that followed. We are not told how sick she was, only that her illness prevented her from carrying out her household duties and her usual acts of hospitality. She was like many of the unsaved around us who have no idea how selfish and uncaring they are. The world knows little of brotherly love and neighbourly love. People look out for their own interests and expect others to do the same. That’s just the way the world operates. But it’s not the way the Lord Jesus operated, and it’s not the way His people operate. Most of them, anyway.

The first thing that Peter’s mother-in-law did when she was healed was minister to Jesus and His disciples. She would have prepared a good meal and provided the best she could for her guests. No doubt, her willingness to do so was increased by her thankfulness to the Lord Jesus for his miracle of healing her. In response to His act of compassion, she responded by doing all she could to provide for His needs. It is that same spirit of thankfulness that prompts caring and generosity among the Lord’s people. We consider how much our Lord has done for us, and respond by doing what we can to others. Such an attitude of thankfulness and generosity makes for a wonderful atmosphere among the Lord’s people. The loving kindness we are able to share is a great testimony to the unsaved. As they see us obeying the new commandment to love one another, they desire to have such a loving spirit themselves.

The Lord Jesus has rescued us from a much greater problem than a fever; how much thankfulness have we shown in response? -Jim MacIntosh

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