Today I’m going to talk about a dude who lived about four thousand years ago. His name was Naaman and he was a commander of the army for the King of Aram, a kingdom which no longer exists but used to be somewhere in the present day middle east. Naaman was sick with leprosy, a serious skin disease that was extremely contagious and required quarantine.
Like all of us today when we get sick, Naaman wanted to get well. He wanted to get well so bad that when his wife’s servant girl, a girl who had been captured from the neighboring country of Israel, told her mistress that Naaman could be healed by a prophet of Samaria, Naaman, full of hope, immediately requested permission to see the prophet. It was granted and soon Naaman arrived at the prophet’s doorstep.
But the prophet did not come out to see him. Instead he sent a messenger to the door with instructions for Naaman to dip himself in the River Jordan seven times. After that he would be healed and his skin would be good as new.
Naaman was furious. He thought the prophet would at the very least come to the door, wave his hand around and call on the name of his god which would get rid of the disease. But no. He was instructed, by a messenger to wash in the River Jordan! A dirty river at that! If he had to bathe in a river, why not the rivers of Damascus which were far cleaner than this one? He stomped off, no doubt feeling like he had been snubbed.
But here’s the thing. Naaman wanted to do something big and heroic to cure his leprosy when all he had to do was something small. Isn’t that how we are even today? When we’re faced with a problem, we try to look for the big thing to take care of it when sometimes all it takes is something small.
Sure we sometimes need big things to take care of big issues, but in all honesty, I say it’s really the everyday small stuff that makes the world a better place to live. And you know what? This small stuff is usually easy stuff. So easy that anyone and everyone can do it, kids and adults alike.
Think about it. It’s the touch on the shoulder or the hand on the arm that sometimes is the only thing that helps us just get through the day. It’s the smiles we receive, even when we don’t deserve them, that lifts our burdens and brightens up our day. It can be an unexpected helping hand when we need it or a simple hug when nothing else will do.
So look around. What small thing can you do today to make someone else’s life just a tad bit easier, brighter or happier?
Naaman was finally convinced to go to the River Jordan and sure enough, he was healed. He was cured in spite of himself.
I’m leaving you with a video that aired as a television commercial not too long ago. Mute the sound and look beyond the maker of the commercial and watch what these people are actually doing. This is what it’s all about my friends. This is what makes the world a better place for all of us.
See you next time.