The Casual Contacts of Jesus
George H. Morrison
One notes in the life of Jesus how many folk there were who met Him casually. The meetings were in no sense prearranged; they were unplanned and unpremeditated contacts. One may hold that in the deepest senses no meeting with the Lord is really casual. Contingencies are not outside the will of Heaven. Still, speaking in the way of men, no one can read the life of Jesus without observing how very full it was of what we call casual encounters. The woman of Samaria had no idea that she was going to meet the Lord beside the well. It was with no thought that he would meet with Christ that the man with the withered hand went to the synagogue (Mark 3:1). The impotent man beside the pool was not waiting for Him who is our Peace-he was waiting for the troubling of the waters (John 5:1-9). All these were casual meetings, speaking in the common parlance of men. They did not issue from definite intention as in the case of the Greeks who sought an interview (John 12:20-21). And how our Lord comported Himself, in what we may call these casual encounters, is a deeply interesting study.
One might be sure, from all we know of life, that such meetings would be rich in consequence; doubly sure when we remember the radiant personality of Jesus. Mark Rutherford,1 in "Miriam's Schooling," tells us of a man who was now growing old. That man, when twenty years of age, had one day passed a woman in the street. And the spiritual beauty of her face, he tells us, haunted him and held him to the end. A thousand times it had rebuked him, and a thousand times it had redeemed him. Not infrequently, when we are dull or troubled, we meet someone in the most casual fashion, and instantly (such is personality) the time of the singing of the birds has come. Now multiply all that by the radiant personality of Jesus, and you grasp the consequence of casual contact. Life was going to be different forever to that Samaritan woman by the well. ...
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