A Healing Glance
Though surrounded by the marvels of medical science, many of us operate
on rather low levels of medical knowledge. Yet, most of us recall that,
to our surprise, the marvel of flu shots and other inoculations rests on the
exposure to low levels of what we’re trying to avoid. A strange remedy—yet
Looking at the “bronze serpent” provided the healing remedy for the faithlessness
of the children of Israel on the Red Sea road: “. . . whenever anyone
who had been bitten by a serpent looked at the bronze serpent, he lived.”
A strange healing remedy: looking at the cause of death itself brings
Jesus’ allusion to the “lifting up” of the Son of Man points toward the
truth that his crucifixion, suffering and death, will provide the healing
for human suffering and death precisely because the one “lifted up” is the
glorious Son of God. A strange healing remedy: gazing with faith
at the suffering and dying Jesus provides the way to eternal life.
And so, the image of Jesus crucified occupies a place of prominence in our
homes and churches. How many sick, how many enduring the pain of speaking
and doing the truth, have found comfort in that healing glance! Jesus’
confidence in the Father with him at that moment when he seems most abandoned
strengthens those who feel most abandoned.
When we gaze at Jesus crucified today, what is our prayer, our desire?
What healing do we seek in that healing glance?