The gospel about the 10 lepers Jesus healed can elicit instinctive knowledge of its message.

It is all about gratitude isn’t it?

9 lepers felt healed and yet rushed out of the scene.

One realized the miracle, and made an effort to return to Jesus and give thanks.

But what if we focus not on the 9 ungrateful, forgetful lepers?

And also not on the thankful one?

Let us just focus on the Lord.

The gospel says that while Jesus was entering a village, the lepers met him there…

Why did the lepers so easily find Jesus? Well, because it was easy to predict where Jesus always was.

He was among people. He was with others. He was always on the road journeying …

with friends and strangers, with the sick, the women, the children and the poor.

The lepers knew Jesus would pass by and see them… and would want to engage them 

in conversation, in love, and in healing.

Can we say the same about other people? Who else in the Bible stops for a chat with lepers?

Who else in the Bible takes time to be with the sick, poor, outcast, dirty and sinful classes?

While others found God, or found joy and peace

… in praying alone

… in studying in silence

… in living apart

… in impersonal and detached relationships

… in giving orders from above,

Jesus found God not despite of, but through the people he met – whoever they were, wherever they were.

Something marvelous happened to the lepers because Jesus decided to be present among them!

Realizing that, perhaps, was what made the one leper make the extra sacrifice of returning to give thanks!  Thank you, Jesus that you are so easy to find!

This is a challenge for us today.

Do we not rather want to

… hide from people who have needs?

… avoid those who have bad reputation?

… ignore the unimportant and little ones?

… separate from those we do not like?

… just pray for others without ever personally connecting with them?

If there are 10 “lepers” in the world today, how many can find healing because you were there for them?

How many will have reason to be grateful because you met them, stayed with them, and loved them?

O Jesus, make me like you in discovering the value, the beauty, and the power of being “between,” not “apart” from my brothers and sisters!

(thanks for sharing in your social media…)