We’re Not Statistics

healing crowds

Rembrandt, 

 Jesus’ initial ministry in Galilee, starting with his miracles in Capernaum, brought excited crowds to him looking for healing for themselves or those with them. Wherever he went, whether in Jewish or Gentile territory, crowds came to him.

In today’s gospel, the deaf man brought to him isn’t identified as either Jew or gentile. He’s just deaf and can’t speak. He has no name. What’s significant about this miracle is the way Jesus heals him. “He took him off by himself away from the crowd.” (Mark 7,33)

Jesus takes the man aside privately, he meets him personally, face to face– and is deeply touched– “groans”–at the deaf man’s plight. He touches the man, putting his finger in his ears and his spittle on his tongue. When the deaf man speaks, Jesus says to him and his friends not to tell anyone. One reason may be that Jesus doesn’t want to be typed simply as a healer. But they went and proclaimed it anyway.

Still, why did he take him off “by himself away from the crowd?” A reminder that God does not look on us as a crowd, but knows each of us? We’re not statistics, part of a list. God meets each of us face to face.

And that’s a reminder to treat others that way too. Each has a face of their own and a story that’s unique. That’s hard to do. It’s easier to deal with people as statistics, numbers, people next in line.

For Jesus people were not statistics, one of a crowd, next in line. That’s not God’s way.

2 thoughts on “We’re Not Statistics

  1. Gail Smyder

    I think we all want to do this because of how important it is to us to be treated so personally by those we love and meet and serve. Ah, just to take a deep breath and keep remembering. The Prayer of St. Francis comes to mind here.
    Love your remembering of your Mom. I go back often, but I was so young when she died–10, but there are certain special memories. She never complained when she was suffering, so a good role model.
    Hope the winter storm did not slam you. More to come for us. It is beautiful, but dangerous, too for so many. Keep warm, well and safe.

    Like

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