I’ve never seen the show “The Walking Dead.” It’s not my kind of thing. But, I must admit, the title is catchy. Spiritually speaking, for a very long time, I was among the walking dead. When you are certain of God’s plan for your life and you pursue it wholeheartedly, you are counted among the living. Your purpose breathes life into you every single day. But, when you are unsure, or you procrastinate, or you try and think you fail, life seems bleak. It is then you become the walking dead.
Have you lost sight of your purpose in life? Did you ever know it? Have you ever been convinced of the reason you are here? In Luke 7:11-17, we come across a widow whose only source of living had died. Her only son was no longer alive. Needless to say, her future was bleak. Though she was alive, she was like the walking dead during her son’s funeral procession. And, she was in tears.
When all hope is gone, when your source of living no longer exists, you hurt deeply and, you cry.
But, amazingly, God sees our pain. “Soon afterwards, Jesus went to a town called Nain, and his disciples and a large crowd went along with him. As he approached the town gate, a dead person was being carried out—the only son of his mother, and she was a widow. And a large crowd from the town was with her. When the Lord saw her, his heart went out to her and he said, “Don’t cry.” Luke 7:11-13 NIV
Just as Jesus saw this woman’s pain and was moved, God has compassion on us and comforts us. Jesu’s words to the grieving mother were so simple, weren’t they? “Don’t cry.” But, he doesn’t stop there. He then went up and touched the coffin and told the young man to “Get up.” There was nothing grandiose about it. It was just a simple command.
Doesn’t Jesus do the same thing for us every day? How often do we find ourselves walking aimlessly through life, or, even worse, dead to life? We may be facing unbearable challenges and have no idea how to move forward. Sometimes, we are lying dead in our sin and just can’t seem to shake it off. But then Jesus comes along and is moved by our pain. He comforts us and touches our lives in so many ways and then issues a simple command.
In John 5:5-8, Jesus gave this same command to a sick man beside a well. Unable to walk for a long time, Jesus simply asked him if he wanted to get well. Whatever his reasons, and there have been many offered from pulpits worldwide, the man had been laying there for a long time. But Jesus only saw one thing. He saw a man who needed to get up and be about his purpose. And his command to him was the same as to the dead young man, “Get up.” That command hasn’t changed for any of us. When we are down and it seems all is lost, Jesus shows up. And, when we open our eyes, we realise that God is with us. We no longer have to be among the walking dead. There is life in us and around us. There are people who need us. We just have to obey one simple command. Get up.
Once we have obeyed God’s command to get up, we must then understand the reason behind it. God has a purpose for our lives. He doesn’t tell us to get up so we can go back to the pain or the sin we used to live in. He calls us out so that we might fulfill the purpose he has for us.
What is it for you? What is the purpose that God has for your life? If you don’t know what it is, or if you’re unsure, then seek out the answer in God’s word. Interestingly enough, God always places a need near us that uniquely fits our talent or gift. But because we were dead in our sin, it was difficult to see how God could use us.
Have your eyes been opened? Can you see the path before you? Jesus told the man at the well to “Get up, pick up your mat, and walk.” John 5:7 NIV Now that God has told you to get up, where does he want you to go? The time has come to find your purpose and live.