Ten contagious and disfigured lepers forced to stay on the edge of town, cry out to Jesus as He passes through Samaria on the way to Jerusalem . . . to the cross.
They ask the Master Healer to have mercy. He does, without a touch. He speaks a healing instruction to go and show themselves to the priests. The ancient law gave authority for priests to declare the unclean, disease free.
The short story in the gospel of Luke (17:11-19) tells how the ten afflicted men went in faith and were healed on the way.
Flesh made fresh. Cleansed.
They got their life back! They could return to society and to their families.
But, only one . . . turned back to Jesus and gave praise out loud.
On his face. At His feet.
When we believe the blessing more than the disease it takes us deep.
Gratitude is deeper than thanks.
Jesus saw only one bow. He noticed ungratefulness and asked, “Weren’t ten men healed? Where are the nine?”
All of life is grace. It’s not about entitlement. When grace and good visit me, I want to be the one and not the nine. A month of infectious illness gave dramatic reason to turn back and say thank you when I was finally able to have my children, grandchildren, and caring friends visit.
When life stops our usual rush and schedule . . . we pause. Grace.
Verse 19 records what Jesus said to the grateful one, “your faith has made you well.” The Greek translation, your faith has saved you . . .
We were all dead, the (un)grateful dead . . . made alive in Christ (Ephesians 2:5).
Healed and cleansed. That’s radical healing deserving radical praise!
Let our memory of mercy have us thank and bow.