Can God Get Glory from My Life?
by Dominique Henderson
What do you want with us, Son of God…Have you come here to torture us before the appointed time? Matthew 8:29
These are words I find myself saying too often. In a story of economic loss, torment and affliction I find common ground with two demon-possessed men. My spiritual malady causes me to ask, “God what do you want with me? What is your purpose for my life?” This is the cry of my [sinful] flesh. It is a cry from my natural man. The one that wars inside of me daily. Paul speaks about this side of us well.
…when I want to do good, evil is right there with me. For in my inner being I delight in God’s law; but I see another law at work in the members of my body, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within my members. Romans 7:21-23
So what am I to do and how does that relate to the demon possessed individuals of Gadarenes? Well I find a common thread between this story and I would like to share it with you today. As we all are, these men were afflicted severely with a spiritual malady that manifested itself physically and otherwise. And finally as also today, money and selfish greed caused a people in need of a Savior to send him away.
A Severe Affliction
These men (there were two that Matthew records) were obviously in serious spiritual trouble. What they lacked physically manifested itself even more so spiritually. For as foul as they must have smelled and how terrible they must have looked, Jesus paid no attention to any of these minor, but evident details. Jesus, who always sees us for what we can be and not what we see ourselves as or how people perceive us. (See Philippians 1:6) He is always concerned with the spiritual well-being of the individual despite how desperate we look or feel. In Matthew’s account, Jesus directly addresses the problems of the sin-sick individuals by telling their possessors to simply--Go. Never mind addressing the questions the men asked (because they asked two), but Jesus always goes directly to the issue. When he sees a soul crying out for deliverance he comes to the rescue. Just as he did to the thief on the cross that believed, he will do for me and you. He doesn’t care that we belong to this church or that one. How big our house is or how raggedy our clothes are…Jesus loves the soul of the person. So, with the desperate soul aching for deliverance from this plaguing malady he answered—quickly and authoritatively. Go. I believe it was a two-fold command. First, to the legion of demons that plagued the individuals to leave them straight forth. Next, to the healed man about his mission. He wanted terribly to follow Jesus, but was told to go and tell of the goodness of this miraculous deed to his family and kinsmen. (see Mark 5:19) He is given the same command as we are given. When Jesus heals us, he requires that we don’t just keep the good news to ourselves. I am able to fully experience fulfillment in my life when I tell others of what Jesus has done for me. My affliction has less and less power over me as I testify of God’s miraculous saving power. My carnal nature that Paul speaks of in Romans looses its hold on me as I submit totally to the testimony of God’s everlasting forgiveness and abundant mercy in my life. This is my command. This is your command. To spread the news of Jesus’ healing power to the nations. Jesus’ words…”go home to your family and tell them how much the Lord has done for you, and how he has had mercy on you.”
A Sending Away
After reading this story, I was in awe of the ingratitude expressed by this town. This town of individuals, obviously frightened by these two men allowed that fear to lead to their ostracizing of them. Not only were they not happy with the fact that these men had received deliverance which would lead to them not plaguing this town anymore, they were angry with Jesus. Angry? Such an unexpected emotion from a people that should have been grateful. Gratitude was a feeling not to be found of a people that were so concerned with their own lives and problems that they had no other concerns. Jesus had come to town and caused tremendous economic loss to their way of life. The loss of the swine from Jesus’ miracle was more than they cared to put up with and they immediately asked Jesus to leave. Well as I thought of that, I thought of how that was not much different from me. When the Holy Spirit begins to reveal to me the areas in my life that I don’t care to give up, I try to ignore his tug on my heart. Too often we urge Jesus to leave us be when he has yet to address our malady. Jesus uses his Holy Word to shine light into the dark areas in our lives where we know we need more of him. Who are we to reject him? Sadly enough, he will only come into the one that lets him in. I’ve often heard it said that he stands knocking on the door of our heart. But the knob is on the inside so we have to let him in. We should never let possessions and things get in the way of Jesus taking up more space in our hearts. His will is best for us and it only hurts us when we fight it. He wants the best for us, so we are better for letting go of or giving up the thing we hold dearest so that he can get closer to us. At that point we experience true freedom—freedom from our self. Our old nature only serves to hold us hostage from Jesus and the great things he has for us in this life and the life to come. Although Independence Day has come and gone, Jesus waits to liberate us all from the malady that we carry within. Let him free you today.
God I pray that you make me sensitive to what your Spirit tries to say to me. Help me to realize that your Son, Jesus will accept me for what I am in the state that I am currently in because your love for me is so great. In Jesus' Name, Amen.
"The Way" from
Limited ConfidentialityRead Article »
Receive the newest devotional each week in your inbox by joining the "Can God Get Glory from My Life?" subscription list. Enter your email address below, click "Go!" and we will send you a confirmation email. Follow the instructions in the email to confirm your addition to this list.