Luke 13:11-13 (New International Version)
11and a woman was there who had been crippled by a spirit for eighteen years. She was bent over and could not straighten up at all. 12When Jesus saw her, he called her forward and said to her, "Woman, you are set free from your infirmity." 13Then he put his hands on her, and immediately she straightened up and praised God.
Let's set the stage. Jesus is teaching in the synagogue. As he was teaching he takes notice of a woman. She is bent over, unable to straighten. When Jesus saw her, he called her forward and said to her, Woman, you are set free form your infirmity. Then he touched her and she immediately was free.
Really it is an amazing scene. Jesus was going about his work, but he never stopped seeing. He was well aware of those around him and the needs which they carried. He was moved by this woman's oppression and by her infirmities and he wanted to give her a new story. He wanted to give her freedom from that which has her bound and bent over.
Jesus continues to see today. He sees and invites. We are always invited to come to Jesus. One of my other favorite stories of Jesus says that when he saw... he had compassion. Jesus still sees and has compassion.
There are a few things that strike me about this story. One Jesus is teaching when he sees. (He wasn't just walking around looking, he was involved in something else) Secondly, he saw and he invited her to come. She had to respond by going to Jesus. (I wonder what might have happened if she said, "no, I'm okay this way. I like back bent over and my spirit tied down." That is a question for another time.) But the invitation was too good to her, in fact, she didn't really know what he was inviting her into, she simply knew she wanted to respond and we know this, because she did respond. She went to Jesus. And lastly, Jesus healed her by touching her as is, saying she was set free of her infirmity. And she was free!
We follow a Jesus who sees. He sees us in the midst of our struggles, pain, joys and sorrows. We follow a Jesus who is constantly inviting us to go to him in our current condition. He invites us to give us a better story, living in His way, walking in His truth, and experiencing His life! It is amazing. It is magical. It is beautiful.
The beauty and power of sight continue as Jesus has enabled us to see.
I wonder what life would be like if were to see in the same way? We go about our every day lives and then, there it is, we see someone who is hurting, in need, broken, crying, bent over and then we invite. We invite them into a new story. A story of freedom.