“Now Simon’s mother-in-law was suffering from a high fever, and they asked Jesus to help her. So he bent over her and rebuked the fever, and it left her. She got up at once and began to wait on them.” Luke 4:38-39
I love this very short “testimony” for several reasons. As others have pointed out, it reminds us of the blessing of “inviting” Christ not only into our heart, but home. His presence results in peace. His presence restores our strength. Secondly, this also reminds us and calls to be intercessors who pray for the well-being of others suffering, as those in this story did for Simon’s mother-in-law. They pled her case, they prayed on her behalf and Jesus responded in tenderness and power. Thirdly, this followed on the heels of a more public and “dramatic” deliverance of a man who was possessed by an unclean demon in the synagogue. While that was more demonstrative and in a more public setting, this reminds us Jesus cares as much for the “little” things or more “private” things. Lastly, it reminds us he is the unique Son of God with power over demons and sickness.
But there is one more lesson in this that is a good reminder for us all and the subject of this blog article. The moment Simon’s mother-in-law was made whole and restored, we are told “she got up at once and began to wait on them.” In other words, the moment she was “saved” she began to serve those around her. The moment she was made whole, she began to wait on others. The moment she was restored, she began to use her strength to minister. Jesus’ tenderness towards her, resulted in her immediately tending to others!
Think about that a little more deeply. In fact, let’s break that simple sentence down to two parts and consider the example and lesson in it for us:
“She got up.” When Christ makes us whole, we too need to “get up” off our sickbed. He has saved us from our sin! He has made us whole. Why then do we continue to live as if we were still sick and in sin? That’s a contradiction and false testimony of our new identity and condition in Christ! We need to “arise” to new life, now that he has “restored” us to new life!
“…and began to wait on them.” She no longer was focused on her own sickness, for she had been healed. But instead of using her new freedom to serve herself, she began to serve others. Likewise, we are called to get up and begin to serve.
If you don’t know where to start, start right where you are! Start with those right around you already in your life. Begin to wait upon their needs and others needs. Simon’s mother-in-law began to serve the ones who had served her by praying for her and pleading with Jesus to help her. She began to help those who had obtained help from the Lord on her behalf. She began to serve those right around her.
Who has helped you in your walk with Jesus? Who has been used in your life as an instrument or vessel through their prayers and intercession? Who has been a channel of God’s blessing in your life? Who has “helped” you in Christ or bringing Christ to you? Begin to find ways to bless them for being a blessing in your life. Begin to help them as they helped you. Look to serve them in their needs as they did for you in your time of need.
We have been saved to serve…and not serve later…but serve now! Simon’s mother-in-law did not wait to begin “waiting” on others. As soon as she was healed, she began to serve Jesus. Don’t say “one day” but instead begin “at once!” Being touched by Jesus is to result in us becoming transformed into servants just as he came to serve not to be served.
Matthew 20:26-28: “Whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be your slave—just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”
Philippians 2:5-7: “Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus: Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant…”