Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Taking What Isn’t Mine

"...It is not right to take the children's bread and toss it to their dogs." – Mark 7:27b(NIV)

Like a sweat-soaked statue, the young corporal stood squarely at attention, while his beloved leader paced the chamber, stopping at intervals to re-read the communiqué that had just been delivered with such dire haste.

Napoleon Bonaparte interrupted his pacing long enough to gesture absent-mindedly. “At ease, Captain.”

“Captain!...Of what regiment?…Sir!” barked the soldier.

Napoleon spun around, speechless at this petty messenger’s brazen impertinence. But in a moment, the furrowed brow relaxed and the eyes were smiling. “My Personal Guard.”

This scene reminds me of that equally “impertinent” Syro-Phoenician woman who approached Jesus requesting a miracle for her little girl.

Imagine the whispers. “How dare she?” “A woman…a gentile…petitioning a rabbi! Just who does she think she is??”

Jesus, too, was astonished, but for a different reason. He could see her extraordinary faith—faith that would withstand one final test. “So! You’re saying I should take food from the children’s table...and toss it to their dogs?”

“But, even we dogs get the crumbs, don’t we?” she shot back. Jesus surely laughed out loud as He proceeded to order up a miracle for this amazing lady.

I’d always heard the faith sermons and read the books. “Know your place in Christ!” they admonished. “Claim what’s yours!” And, nothing could be more rock-solid scriptural.

But, then I watched this no-account woman taking faith to a whole new level. In her Old Covenant context, she was definitely OUT of line, reaching for what was certainly NOT hers. And, it didn’t seem to bother Jesus one bit!

Now I’ve learned to comb the Word for “crumbs” of promise. The ones Satan says can’t possibly have been meant for me personally.

So, the Father gives good gifts “to his children?” Guess what?...I’m one of those! These signs shall follow “those who believe?” Yep, that little crumb of dynamite’s going in my basket too.

How about you? What unique passion lies forgotten in your attic because they’ve told you it’s unachievable...unthinkable...too outrageous even to ask? And, your mind says, “Sure, God can use ‘people’ to do great things. Just...not me personally.”

Hey! Jesus needs a good laugh today. And, He still knows how to give good gifts to His kids. So, go ahead—walk into the throne room now and take what isn’t yours.