In the last blog post I started a series on How Jesus Heals the Brokenhearted. But before we can understand the “how” we must first understand the “who”. Healing is a person and a process NOT a program. I shared how Jesus was fully God and fully man. I’m still reeling from meditating on the fact that the uncreated God came and lived as a man. He grew up in a lower class family and forsook palaces and thrones. Think about it! When Jesus was on his journeys he had to squat in the bushes to go to the bathroom. That’s pretty radical to imagine. But it’s something we need to contemplate. It allows us to see that Jesus understood the human condition intimately. Hebrews 4:15 tells us:
“This High Priest of ours understands our weaknesses, for he faced all of the same testings we do, yet he did not sin”. (New Living Translation)
He knows! He understands! He feels!
We don’t know much about Jesus’ growing up years. We know his earthly father was a carpenter, a manual laborer. He didn’t have running water, a toilet or any of the modern conveniences we are accustomed to. But whatever occurred in those years leading up to his ministry years, Jesus learned to love the common people, the broken people, the sinners.
Jesus’ public ministry began after his baptism. Something powerful and significant occurred that day. Matthew 3:13-17 is one of three accounts in the gospels of this event.
13 Then Jesus went from Galilee to the Jordan River to be baptized by John. 14 But John tried to talk him out of it. “I am the one who needs to be baptized by you,” he said, “so why are you coming to me?”
15 But Jesus said, “It should be done, for we must carry out all that God requires.[a]” So John agreed to baptize him.
16 After his baptism, as Jesus came up out of the water, the heavens were opened[b] and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and settling on him. 17 And a voice from heaven said, “This is my dearly loved Son, who brings me great joy.” (New Living Translation)
Before Jesus did anything noteworthy, before he preached his first sermon, healed the sick, casted out demons or showed compassion on the broken, he was acknowledged and founded in his identity with the Father. If you translated this into modern language it would be the equivalent of “That’s my boy! I’m so proud of him!”. He began his ministry with the affirmative love of his Father. He knew who he was in his Father’s eyes, rather than in seeing himself through the eyes and affirmation of man. He knew he was loved not for what he would “do”, but for who he “was”. If Jesus, who was God made flesh, needed to be rooted and grounded in his identity as a son of God, that he was pleasing to the Father, how much more do we need that grounding, deep in our souls.
Jesus knew who he was before he launched into his life-calling and destiny. He heard the Father’s heart and trusted the Father to lead him. Everything he would do would flow from the place of knowing the Father and knowing Himself through the Father’s love and affirmation. We must all begin and end our lives and callings in the same manner.