After a long day, Jesus took His disciples and "withdrew privately to a town called Bethsaida. When the crowds found out, they followed Him. He welcomed them, spoke to them about the kingdom of God, and cured those who needed healing."
I heard that still quiet voice that is unmistakable: "This is your job as mama."
I read back through those verses. Yes, I can identify with Jesus. He was trying to withdrawal privately, as I have found myself many many times in need of some reprieve, some quiet. When the older ones are bickering, and the dryer is announcing another load to fold, and the rough and tumbly one needs his 6th bandaid of the day... When the dishes are stacking up, and the cat needs an emergency visit to the vet, and the chicken is still frozen an hour before the meal needs to be on the table, and the little ones ask me to play a board game... Sometimes a cup of tea and a good book tempt me to leave the arena in the height of the tournament. Sometimes even a closed bathroom door provides a temporary retreat...if even for just 2 minutes...and then under the door wiggle little fingers sliding a newly created work of art and exclaiming, "Look, Mama...look what I just did!"
When the crowds found out, they followed Him. He welcomed them, spoke to them about the Kingdom of God, and cured those who needed healing.
He welcomed them.
tr.v. wel·comed, wel·com·ing, wel·comes
1. To greet, receive, or entertain (another or others) cordially or hospitably.
2. To receive or accept gladly
Notice that it is a transitive verb. Verb means action. Transitive means that there must be someone or something that receives that action. It seems Jesus provided a case study in transitive verbs. He was Love in action, and there was always someone at the receiving end of that love.
To follow Jesus sometimes looks like a mission trip to the other side of the globe. It sometimes looks like forgiveness when we would rather hold a grudge. Sometimes it looks like helping a widow replace lightbulbs.
But today it looks like welcoming my imperfect children, even when I'm tired or busy. It means speaking to them about the Kingdom of God, and providing the bandaids, hugs and prayers that soothe and heal even the most invisible of scrapes.