The Wonderful Wizard of Oz – Chapter 8

Blog 1948 – 01.24.2021

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz – Chapter 8

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz – Chapter 8

One of the great downfalls of becoming famous is this business of appointing gate keepers to limit others access to us. It is a problem most of us never have to concern ourselves much with but for celebrities and well-known people outstanding in their fields, it can pose potential troubles. The biggest being how do you stay in touch if you allow few if any to touch you.

One of my favorite stories in the Gospel accounts of Jesus brief earthly ministry is an account of him being pressed upon by a crowd all wanting to touch him. His twelve closest disciple were on all sides of him trying their best to all be gate keepers and to keep the crowd from crushing him when Jesus called out, “Who touched me?” The guys are dumbfounded at the question and respond, “Whatever do you mean, a crowd of people are pressing in on us all around. How can you even ask such a question?” Jesus explains, “Someone just touched me for a reason and I felt power go out of me to them.” A woman came forth trembling having been caught. She had suffered for twelve long years with a bleeding problem that the many doctors she had seen only made worse. She had said to herself if I can only touch the hem of his garment I will be healed. Her faith had made her whole. She had gotten passed the gate keepers and made contact.

I had a work friend many years ago say that many more people would see and touch Jesus were it not for what he called “the lunatic fringe” called the church that surrounded him and thought themselves his chosen gate keepers whose job was to keep people away. It is not your or my job to protect Jesus he always had ten thousand angels on call to do that if need be, our job is not to be in the way keeping people away but to stay out of the way. In this case it is not impolite to point.

The woman at the well said, “Come see a man who told me everything I ever did, who saw through me in a glance, and still offered me acceptance and hope. Is not he the One we have been looking for?” Or words to that affect. The gate keepers are always hung up on precise passwords, keys, and secret handshakes, that sort of thing, thinking themselves “special” and repeating silly things like “only a few are choice or chosen, this is not for everybody.” That is just so wrong headed and wrong hearted, of course it is for everybody…for God so loved the world…whosoever, one and all.

In a very touching movie, Miracles From Heaven, a little girl who suffered terrible pain a long time, so much so that she wanted to die just to have it be over, falls down into the center of a dead tree, head first, and is trapped there for hours before rescuers can get her out. Miraculously she suffers no broken bones or even scratches, furthermore her diseased bowels are healed. In recounting the hours she spent trapped in the dark, inside the tree, she says she saw Jesus in Heaven and that he said she had to go back even though she did not want to go back to all the pain. He assured her that he had taken all that and that she had a new story to tell. Her mom and dad cautioned her that when she told her story that many would not believe her and she said, “They will when they are ready to.”

The Psalmist David wrote that he just wanted to be a door keeper in the house of God, not a gatekeeper, but a guy who keeps the door opened wide for all who are ready to come in – me too, how about you?

Your friend and fellow traveler,

David White


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