If we were asked, “Where is a favorite place for you?” most of us would come up with an answer rather quickly. I suspect that wherever that place is, it isn’t where we are now!
Most of us, at one time or another, and maybe even now, find ourselves in a place we’d rather not be. We might not be thinking of a different geographic location but wishing we were in a different place when it comes to our health, finances, relationships, job, or some other circumstance.
When we’re not where we’d like to be it’s good to remember that God has a plan for us where we now find ourselves. That’s the situation a man whom Jesus healed discovered.
Life had been miserable for him. He had no home, often living among the tombs on the eastern shore of the Sea of Galilee. He was at war within himself, haunted by many demons. Everyone saw him as a crazy man, a wild man, a demon-possessed man. When they tried to apprehend him he would rip off the chain restraints they tried to use.
Then Jesus came across the lake in a boat with His disciples and healed the man. The man experienced an astonishing change that was truly miraculous.
When Jesus and His disciples were ready to climb into their boat to head back across the lake to the western shore, the newly healed man pleaded to go with them. Who could blame him? If he stayed in his old stomping grounds he had a horrible reputation to live down. Who would want to be around him, the one known as the crazy cemetery man? It was far more appealing to him to sail off into the sunset and into a new life with Jesus and His friends.
Jesus denied his request, telling him to stay where he was. Interesting. When Jesus called His 12 disciples it was a call to literally follow Him, wherever He went. For this man, Jesus was calling him to stay where he was!
So, what about our circumstances? Some of them may not be ideal, some even far from ideal. It’s possible God will call us to a new set of circumstances; we can pray for that, even work toward that end. Then again, maybe our call is to make the best of where we now find ourselves. Until the Lord changes our circumstances, our call from Him is to be the person He wants us to be right where we are! After all, we can’t do God’s work where we are not, but only where we are. Here and now is where it’s at!
“As Jesus was getting into the boat, the man who had been demon-possessed begged to go with him. Jesus did not let him, but said, ‘Go home to your own people and tell them how much the Lord has done for you, and how he has had mercy on you.’ So the man went away and began to tell in the Decapolis how much Jesus had done for him. And all the people were amazed.” Mark 5:18-20