When we say “rhythm of faith” we refer to a process of response to the grace of God which at least includes:
to see and hear, come back, praise, worship, give thanks, get up, and go.
This rhythm of faith is explained by the story of the grateful leper in Luke 17: 11 – 19. Now on his way to Jerusalem, Jesus travelled along the border between Samaria and Galilee. As he was going into a village, ten men who had leprosy met him. They stood at a distance and called out in a loud voice, “Jesus, Master, have pity on us!”
When he saw them, he said, “Go, show yourselves to the priests.” And as they went, they were cleansed. One of them, when he saw he was healed, came back, praising God in a loud voice. He threw himself at Jesus’ feet (worshiping) and thanked him — and he was a Samaritan. Jesus asked, “Were not all ten cleansed? Where are the other nine? Has no one returned to give praise to God except this foreigner? Then he said to him, “Rise and GO; your faith has made you well.”
The witness of this one Samaritan is much more than a generalized grateful response. It is shared with us as his exemplary, specific journey of response to the grace of God. But if we truly believe in the Word that became flesh and changed everything in our lives, we have to believe that our responses to Christ’s interventions in our lives has to be as concrete and real, as the gracious encounters with the Lord that made us grateful.
The response of the one leper, (we only later find out he is a Samaritan, a marginalized foreigner) is emphasized and celebrated in this passage as a model of discipleship, of living out the rhythm faith.
His response to his healing is not just a singular expression, not just about giving thanks, but it gives witness to a trajectory, a process, a spectrum of reaction that changed his life and made him a disciple that did not only go to the priests but the last time Jesus said he must “GO” remind of the Great Commission where the main verb in the sentence is “GO” and make disciples!
This story asks of us to consider the response of this outsider as someone who models the depth and breadth of our possible responses to God’s love, healing and salvation.
All were healed.
But only one was saved. Only one was ready to GO.
Only one journeyed the trajectory of faith. Only this Samaritan represents those who
see, come back, praise, worship, give thanks, get up, and go and keep GOING.
He was saved because he saw that he too could be a member of the Jesus-community, where even the despised, for example a Samaritan, can experience the complete rhythm of God’s favour.
Through the response of the Samaritan with leprosy, we are invited to reflect on how the fullness of what salvation might mean for us happens when we too see the Gospel, come back to God, praise the Lord, worship God, give thanks for his favour, get up and GO for the Lord, as the life changing responses to God’s grace in our lives and in the lives of those we reach in the Name of Christ!
The message is clear: Grateful believers live the rhythm of faith, to the full and to the end!
Let’s all continue to live this rhythm until we are ready to actually GO!