Now when Jesus returned, a crowd welcomed him, for they were all expecting him. “Then a man named Jairus, a synagogue leader, came and fell at Jesus’ feet, pleading with him to come to his house because his only daughter, a girl of about twelve, was dying. (Luke 8:40-42a)
Matthew 25 tells us the Parable of the bags of gold. A man gives five bags of gold to one servant, two bags of gold to another, and one bag of gold to the last. The first two servants double their master’s money and the last buries his gold in the ground. The master called the first two servants, good and faithful. The last servant he called wicked and lazy. This parable is not about money. Jesus doesn’t care about the amount of money we make unless it’s keeping us from following Him. This parable is about risks. Jesus wants His followers to take risks.
In today’s Scripture, Jairus, a Pharisee, risks everything by falling at Jesus’ feet and following him. A Pharisee falling at Jesus’ feet seems almost as unlikely as demons falling at Jesus’ feet. He will be ousted from the Pharisees and the synagogue. Early on in Luke, we saw a couple Pharisees following Jesus, but now the Pharisees are against Jesus, looking for Him to make mistakes. When Jesus heals the paralytic in Luke 5:21 and tells him, “Your sins are forgiven,” the Pharisees accuse Jesus of speaking blasphemy. When Jesus and his disciples pick grain, the Pharisees follow him into the grain field and accuse him of working on the Sabbath. (Luke 6:2). Then, when Jesus heals the man with the withered hand on the Sabbath, the Pharisees were filled with fury and plotted what they would do to Him. (Luke 6:11). The crowd was prepared, they were expecting Jesus and welcomed him. But the Pharisees, except Jairus, were not in that crowd and did not welcome Him.
Risks, whether moving or taking a new job or performing a loving act to a total stranger, should be taken prayerfully. We should always follow Jesus. Jesus will use risks to teach and shape us into the people He wants us to be, even if that risk doesn’t turn out the way we want it to. Perhaps we are disappointed now, but God may not be finished answering our prayers.
Father God, I’ve taken a risk. If you have a lesson in it for me, help me see it. If there are more risks You want me to take, let me hear Your requests. Thank you for helping me grow closer to You and having faith my risk will turn out for the best. You may not be finished answering my prayer. In Jesus’ precious name I pray. Amen.