He put his finger into the man’s ears and, spitting, touched his tongue.
Life has become much more automated recently, hasn’t it? Driverless cars are on the horizon. Cell phones can now be unlocked through facial recognition software. If you go to the grocery store or the public library, you’ll find people flocking to the self-checkout stand. Certainly these innovations have made life more convenient. But there’s still something to be said for the old-fashioned kind of customer service, in which a cashier hands you your money, and you sometimes end up chatting about the weather, sports, or a recent family outing. It’s what we sometimes call the “human touch.”
Human contact is not only important to us, but it’s important to God as well. That’s why Jesus held children in his lap, and it’s why he had no hesitation touching lepers. It’s also why, in Scripture, he didn’t just pray words of healing. He made it a point to touch the deaf and mute man.
Jesus may no longer be present on earth physically, but he still wants to touch people. He wants to do it through us. This is especially important in our time, as we live in a world where human interaction seems to be decreasing every day.
Something that seems as insignificant as a warm handshake or a pat on the shoulder can be a huge comfort at times. A warm embrace can bring healing to a close friend who is struggling. Even a simple “hello” coupled with a smile can lift someone’s spirits. And if you have the opportunity to pray with someone, you might ask if it’s okay to hold their hand or place your hand on their shoulder while you pray.
God has given all of us a healthy desire to give and receive love. When that desire is bottled up, we suffer, and the people we have an opportunity to help suffer as well.
So let’s make it a point to go out of our way to touch people with a smile and a warm gesture of affection today. In our homes, let’s make it a point to offer displays of affection to our spouse and children. After all, Jesus did tell us to love one another as he loves us—and he loves to touch us!
word among us