Jesus said to them,She asked what was meant by "physician heal yourself." I explained that the people were having trouble accepting Jesus for the messiah since they knew him already as Joseph the carpenter's son in his home town. The people wanted him to do miracles like he had done in Capernaum. They did not feel he was authorized to correct them. As one commentator put it "deal with your own defects before telling someone else to deal with their defects". Some say it was a foreshadow of Jesus being called to come down off of the cross.
Sunday night I played Satan in a drama at church and so I had bought some white contact lenses to wear to add to my effect. As soon as I took the contacts out on Sunday night I knew there was a problem. My vision was very blurry in my right eye. All day Monday things kept getting worse so I had a colleague look at it and started medication.
On Monday night, the epithelium of my cornea completely peeled away. In other words my eye got messed up! Extreme pain. I spent the whole night hurting and thinking about all of the worse cases I had ever seen in my 15 years of practicing optometry. It hurt too badly to sleep at all.All the worse case scenarios were playing out in my late night imagination. In the middle of the night, this verse came to mind; "Physician heal thyself". Easier said than done!
Early this morning I got Dr. Berg to check things out and we started some new medications and put in a type of bandage contact lens. My eye is red, swollen, and ugly. I have a booked schedule and it is not contagious so I am suffering through seeing patients. I've tried to keep the lights low so the patients can't see exactly how ugly my eye is. I can just hear them all thinking "Physician heal thyself" before you come trying to take care of me.
The experience has been good for me though. I had forgotten how badly those drops burn when your eye is so inflamed. Patients tell me all the time, but now I have more compassion. I forget what it is like to spend the night in extreme pain just waiting for morning to get to the office for relief. Patients come in that way all the time. But now I can better relate.
It helped me see that verse in a different light too. Jesus was the physician and he did heal himself. He had just left the desert being tempted by Satan- the real one not the one with the fake white contacts. He had decided to leave the applause and the approval of Capernaum to take his ministry to the people that needed it instead of enjoying the fame and letting the people come to him. He had broken away from family and loved ones to fulfill his destiny for the Father's kingdom.
So when I am tempted, He's been there. When I struggle with decisions about ministry or family or where to go, He's been there. He's made the tough decisions. He's sacrificed to experience the Kingdom first hand. He's been the physician and know's what I need.
I have decided that I would much rather spend my days imitating Jesus than running around acting like satan.