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Out Live Your Life by Max Lucado
See the Need; Touch the Hurt
Peter, with John at his side, looked him straight in the eye . . . He grabbed him by the right hand and pulled him up.
—Acts 3:4, 7 (msg)
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When Jesus landed and saw a large crowd, he had compassion on them, because they were like sheep without a shepherd.
(Mark 6:34 niv)
Gracious Lord, in the Bible you are called “the One who sees me,” and I know that your eyes are always upon me to guide and protect and bless and correct. You have given me eyes too. Grant me the power to use them to truly see. Help me see those you put in my path—really see them, with all their hurts, their desires, their longings, their needs, their joys, and their challenges. As you open my eyes, prompt me to open wide my arms to offer whatever help and encouragement I have to give. In Jesus’ name I pray, amen.
Questions for Discussion
1. “Human hurt is not easy on the eye.” Tell of a time you encountered suffering that was painful to observe. Describe a time you were hurting and someone made you think he or she really saw you.
2. What does it communicate to people in need, especially those who are not beautiful, when you look directly at them, in their eyes?
3. Take note of each meaningful touch you find in the following miracles of Jesus: Matthew 9:20–22; Mark 1:40–45; Mark 7:32–35; Luke 8:51–55; Luke 13:11–13; John 9:1–7. Did Jesus need to touch people to heal them? Why do you think some form of touch was part of each healing?
4. Peter and John gave more than the money the crippled beggar asked for in Acts 3. What resources do you have—beyond money—that you could give to people in need?
5. For Peter and John the strategy of kind eyes meeting desperate ones and strong hands helping weak ones unleashed a miracle of God. How could you live out this strategy?
Ideas for Action
■ Take time this week to look people in their eyes. When you talk to someone you know is needy, maintain eye contact with him or her much longer than you normally would. Reflect on how this helps you really see people’s needs in a new way. It will have greater impact if you keep a journal or write a summary at the end of the week, describing how this experiment affected your perspective.
■ This week, go out of your way to visit a person in need. When someone you know is in the hospital, visit that person to show you care. Go to a nursing home this week to extend a compassionate touch to others. Start by shaking people’s hands or giving them an appropriate hug. Ask if you can pray for them, and lay a hand on their shoulders (you could even pray silently if you feel more comfortable doing so). As you head home, reflect on how meaningful the visit was. Also, consider how you feel after these visits, compared to how you felt on the way there.
“Reprinted by permission. Outlive Your Life: You Were Made to Make A Difference by Max Lucado, 2010, copyright date, Thomas Nelson Inc. Nashville, Tennessee. All rights reserved.”