© 2017 Bill Murphy
CONCERN can be a care, trouble, or distress. It can also mean to relate to – or to pertain to. I’m using this second meaning.
I believe that concern – as meaning pertain to, can best be illustrated by Facebook. I have only 45 friends on my Facebook page. Some of my friends and family member have ‘em in the hundreds! A few of my Facebook friends post every day, and some of those post several times a day. That said, I ask this question: Do you respond to each and every single Facebook post? I dare say that few of us do.
Truthfully, it boils down to the matter of concern – does this relate to me – does it pertain to me? We tend to respond only when something ‘jumps up and grabs us,’ or as I’ve heard it put, ‘it really blows our dress up!’
Luke records a very interesting illustration of Jesus’ take on concern.
“As Jesus was on his way, the crowds almost crushed him.
(Get the picture here. Crowds. A throng of people. Almost crushing him.)
And a woman was there who had been subject to bleeding for twelve years, but no one could heal her. She came up behind him and touched the edge of his cloak, and immediately her bleeding stopped. “Who touched me?” Jesus asked. When they all denied it, Peter said, “Master, the people are crowding and pressing against you.” But Jesus said, “Someone touched me; I know that power has gone out from me.” Luke 8:42-48 NIV
What’s the difference between our Facebook responses (or lack of) and the response of Jesus to the poor woman?
Our concern can be compared to a filter or screen. A fine screen filters out all but the finer stuff, whereas a course screen allows larger items to pass through.
Our concern filters are adjustable.
The extreme adjustment on one side is labeled ME. It filters out everything not pertaining to us (you and me.) The extreme on the opposite side of the dial is labeled YOU. That side allows in anything and everything from every one.
In the narrative above from Luke, Jesus was actually on a mission at the time of the incident described. He was on his way to heal a dying child! Yet Jesus allowed His CONCERN for the woman interrupt the life and death issue at hand! Even amid the chaos of the surging crowd, pushing and pulling on every side, He still felt the TOUCH of a needy hand – on the helm of His garment! That tells us where Jesus had his CONCERN DIAL set!
That brings up an all familiar teaching we know as well as the back of our own hands – “Do to others as you would have them do to you.” Luke 6:31 NIV
This could be paraphrased ‘Have the concern for others that you would have them have concern for you.’
I owe a big apology to my Facebook friends!