"Sickness and suffering are like
soldiers under God’s command and
subject to obey the faithful in the name of
Food for thought from the book of Matthew
"God cares for the needy, but he loves more those who care for the
Like a pastor over a congregation of a hundred people, so a Centurion is a
man in charge over one hundred soldiers. Pastors and Centurions are men
under authority with authority over other men. In and by themselves these
two men are just men at best and one more among their peers that practically
speaking they are one hundred and one soldiers or one hundred and one members
or as the one hundred and one Dalmatians. That is, one hundred plus one units
of the same kind.
A Centurion, a Pastor or a delta Dalmatian dog are not there among their number
to "bark" orders, advice, or warnings in time of sickness, need or
danger. No! Soon in life, men in authority realize that authority
without power is useless.
A caring leader of men will be loved and respected by his followers as they
show love and care to the needs of those under him in their time of need.
Therefore the saying is true, "People, soldiers or even dogs do not care
how much you know until they know of how much you care". A sick
soldier, a suffering believer or a dog of the pack in danger, are not there in
need of instruction, advice or training, no! They are there in need of help and
care beyond their capacity to help themselves. That is why, a friend in times
of need is a friend indeed".
This reminds me
of how the late Martin Luther King use to express his feelings toward his
silent friends by this quote, “In the end we will not remember the words of our
enemies, but the silence of our friends”. He seem to be saying in different
words that many will be saying to his friends in heaven many times over, “I am
sorry for my silence”.
The fellowship of
the sayings is our inheritance while on earth. It is an inheritance to be
expended it on earth where the need of fellowship is most helpful. In
heaven we will have plenty and more to enjoy but not so much in need of it
because Jesus will fill it all in all including my wants and needs, plus many
more I did not even imagine possible to desire and have. Indifference and
silence are not the trade mark of God who loves
and promotes fellowship among those who are reconciled with him and with one
Those who have
authority must also have power to administer authority for the common
good. Where does authority come from?
The source of power is the same source from where Authority comes from.
There is something wrong when one has authority but has no power at all.
Let me illustrate the idea, I have two outlets in the counter of my kitchen
that I use for several electric small appliances, the rice maker, the pot, the
toaster and the coffee maker. I unplug one of them to plug the other.
One day I unplug
the coffee maker and I plug the toaster and put two slices of frozen bread in
the toaster and pushed down the button switch of the
toaster expecting the toaster to toast the slices of bread. It never
happened, I wiggle around the cord in the outlet hoping to get the toaster
do its job, but no response.
In frustration I unplugged and plunged again the toaster only to find out that
the cord I was plugging and wiggling was not that of the toaster but of the
rice maker. Good that I was alone other wise I would have been embarrassed and
turned red as the neck of a male turkey.
I had the authority to plug and unplug but I did not have the power to toast
the two slice of bread even to look warmness. I did not have the power
because I was not plugged to the source of power. Are you a man or woman
of authority? Do you have the power to “toast”? Are you plugged in, or are you
toasting in the power of the flesh?
Before Jesus left
earth to go back home to his father in heaven, he met with his disciples on a
mountain of Galilee. Then Jesus came to them and said,
in heaven and on earth has been given to me, therefore go and make disciples of
all nations baptizing them in the name of the Father in the name of the Son and
in the name of the Holy Spirit and teaching them to obey everything I have
commanded you. And surely I am with you always to the very end of the
Jesus is the
incarnation of all authority and he commands his followers to go in his name to
the whole world to do his will and to do greater things than him.
power? You may ask.
The outlet or
power is Jesus himself and his authoritative word whereby if we plug into his
word by faith in a childlike manner by taking Jesus at his word we come into
alignment with God where all things are a prayer away.
If we do so, we will live to see the light of the power of God in action and
immediately the love and power of God flowing and confirming to us the truth
that, “Faith is the victory that overcomes the world”.
Power and authority go together linked by the golden ring of faith.
Notice that Jesus only mentions, “all Authority is given to me” in the great
commission. Jesus did not need to speak separately about power and authority as
if it would be another coin, because it is the other face of the same coin. In the
beginning was the Word and the Word was with God and the word was God. All things were made by him and nothing that is made was
made without him and in him there was love, light and life. The word of Jesus
had power and authority.
The Roman Centurion was a pagan soldier, but his eyes were open by grace and he
knew enough about Jesus to come confidently in a childlike manner as if
bringing a bucket for a gallon of power to shower his servant back to
When Jesus shows
willingness to go to heal his servant, the centurion did not even want Jesus to
come under his roof and touch his servant or rub some ointment to
alleviate his servant’s pain and excruciating suffering.
While many would
have been eager to the see the evidence of Jesus’ deity, the Centurion makes it
easy the work of Jesus by believing enough to save him time and effort to go
all the way to his pagan house and says humbly the following,
“I do not
deserve for you to come under my roof. But just say the word and my
servant will be healed for I myself am a man under authority with soldiers
under me, I tell this one “Go” and he goes, and I tell the other one “come” and
he “comes”. I say to my servant “do this” and he does it”. Jesus heard this and he was
astonished with his great faith
I can only imagine Jesus turning his face toward the centurion for a closer
look at him in astonishment with a great smile that beamed the light of the Sun
as he placed his arm over the shoulder of the centurion as a well-pleased
father with the report card of his little boy.
Ever since I first read this story I have chosen it as a self fulfilled
prophecy for myself and I have focused with a laser beam high definition focus
to make Jesus smile. I would give anything and everything to make Jesus smile
on my account. My tears of pain and suffering dried immediately at the
warmth of his arm on my shoulder and my soul jumps out of my skin when I heard
his voice whispering beautiful things never heard before that keep me closer to
him year after year.
When I find myself and those whom I love in pain and
suffering, I go silently to the Holy of Holies and stay there saying nothing
but YES to what my soul knows well that his will be done as in heaven. While
there, I think in the curtain ripped from top to bottom and I take it all in
and frantically write as if there is no tomorrow. My silent thoughts in mere
words of men are not enough to express as you can appreciate them even now, let
alone to communicate in its true wealth.
I look forward
every morning at the cool of the day my time with the Lord. As soon as I hear
his voice whispering his words into my ears, I smell his breath so near to my
nostrils us when he first blew life into me in Adam back in the garden.
At those romantic
times with the Father, I can not wait for the day when Jesus himself will come
in the beauty of his holiness in perfect love and will cause my heart to stop
and takes from me the only thing that's mine and his that's breath.
"The last hour when he will take my breath away" and my lungs will
retire from their faithful service I also will bow my head down like Jesus in
the cross having breathed my last.
Believe like the Centurion!
Believe like the leper man!
Believe like a child!
Take Jesus at his word!
Just believe with all your heart and it will be done just as you believe it
And healing will come immediately! "The blank check is signed by Jesus,
you write the amount as you see fit". Your account has been canceled in
I am not a good patient to my doctors. I hear them but always end up doctoring
myself. I hate medicine. I do not trust doctors who do not pray. I do not
trust preachers who do not have power. I hunger for the supernatural as the
hummingbird hungers for the nectar and the bee for honey. I do not like restaurant
food as much as home cooked meals made with love. Like the Centurion I am
also a man under authority in the kitchen for I have learned to cook from the
best. In the same way I like to serve also spiritual food of my own liking
before serving to others.
experience makes me appreciate what I cook and write. At the end my fellowship
around the table is with those who have developed an acquired taste in a
If I would have
my way, and a healthy liver, I would like to have a cup of wine before my meal
from the leftover wine from the wedding of Canaan with grilled fresh fish from
the Sea of Galilee caught and cooked by Jesus, which probably ran out as soon
as the hungry overnight fishermen hit the shore.
Nowadays I will settle for second best and that is some of the 153 large fish
caught by the disciples but grilled in the same grill that Jesus fixed the meal
for his followers. My taste buds have been spoiled for good. I cannot
settle for anything less than good food and anointed sermons prepared in the
comfort of the open kitchen in the Holy of Holies.
Please give me a side order of some barley loaves of bread from the brown bag
of the Toddlers who fed with Jesus five thousand men. I know there are twelve
baskets of left over. As a dessert I would like the local fruit of the
season, grapes and figs. I like figs that started to blossom the year of my
birth and are now in full bloom for us the baby boomers, whose generation will
not pass until Jesus returns.
Dear Martha, you are my favorite waitress and I would like you to please bring
us some quail nuggets as appetizer because I know you have plenty of it from
the Sinai desert. I am a diabetic and I cannot wait to eat, so please
bring as a bowl of manna immediately to be munching as we wait for our meal?
The fresh water of the well of Jacob would be fine, thank you. No need of ice
or lemon please and leave the pitcher of water on the table. It sure is
By the way, we commend you for your taste of the flower arrangement; those are
beautiful lilies from the valley of Sharon.
Ups! I am sorry
my friends, I forget to wrap up our "Food for Thought" of today.
There are two things that amazed Jesus, the first one is “great faith” from
those who were not expected to have any and the “lack of faith” from
those who should have faith but they do not have any. I rather sin of
presumption than of lack of faith and live as if Jesus had not died and
resurrected to give me faith as a gift and with it all thing and abundantly.
I heard a preacher and some of his followers ask repeatedly the question why
are you here? As some rhetorical question but my answer to that question is
this. I go to church in the hope of once again hear the supernatural voice of
God in Jesus and smell the breath of Jesus and feed my soul with anointed
sermons full of authority and power. “The kingdom of God is not a
matter of words but of power”.
I want to see the "soldiers" of pain and suffering being removed in
the power and authority of the word of Jesus back to the barracks where they
I want to see Pastors like Centurion caring like good shepherds care and not
only as hired shepherds do or shepherd dogs bark and bite their skinny little
legs, forcing them to do their will.
A Centurion of
Jesus who cares for his fellow skinny-legged lamb of Jesus.