…the parched land shall become a pool, and the thirsty lands springs of water…(Isaiah 35:7)

Where Are the Nine?

By Rex Goode


At the feast that is life, some people come to the table only to eat and not to serve. Many things are there of which to partake, but no food is quite so sweet as the joy of serving. As the banquet is laid before us, we often take no thought for those who clean, cook, prepare, and sacrifice. I have often found myself so wrapped up in feeding that I could not even remember that the food did not suddenly appear just for me.

It is a daily struggle to remember that the joy in life comes not from being served, but from serving. All our relationships with other people have us either being givers or takers. Do we examine ourselves to see if we are only taking and not giving?

How many times do we step up to the table, and when we have had our fill, caring nothing for those who have waited in line behind us, walk away with full bellies and empty hearts? Rare is the person that will stay and serve after his own hunger is filled. There is no hungrier person than one who sees nothing beyond his own need because he can glut himself on the labors of others and still be empty. Even more ungrateful is the person who eats at the table and turns and points the finger of disdain at all the hungry people.

What good is being healed if we cannot turn and heal?

I think of my relationship with my Savior, from whom I constantly take, but to whom I never give. I know in his infinite grace and power, that he needs nothing I have.

In Job we read:


Then Eliphaz the Temanite answered and said,

Can a man be profitable unto God, as he that is wise may be profitable unto himself?

Is it any pleasure to the Almighty, that thou art righteous? or is it gain to him, that thou makest thy ways perfect? (Job 22:1–3)


I feel some remorse that my relationship with him is weighted that so that I can never repay him for all of the kindness and compassion he has shown me. There being nothing he needs from me, I search for some way in which I can show my gratitude.

To his disciples he said:


Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out devils: Freely ye have received, freely give. (Matthew 10:8, emphasis added)


What gratitude is there in me, if having received good gifts from God, I hide them in the ground and hoard them for myself?

Think of those things that have been the most help in the struggles of life? Do you partake of those things, then consider yourself done and move on, or do you take your place behind the same table from which you just ate, and serve?


And it came to pass, as he went to Jerusalem, that he passed through the midst of Samaria and Galilee.

And as he entered into a certain village, there met him ten men that were lepers, which stood afar off:

And they lifted up their voices, and said, Jesus, Master, have mercy on us.

And when he saw them, he said unto them, Go shew yourselves unto the priests. And it came to pass, that, as they went, they were cleansed.

And one of them, when he saw that he was healed, turned back, and with a loud voice glorified God,

And fell down on his face at his feet, giving him thanks: and he was a Samaritan.

And Jesus answering said, Were there not ten cleansed? but where are the nine?

There are not found that returned to give glory to God, save this stranger.

And he said unto him, Arise, go thy way: thy faith hath made thee whole. (Luke 17:11–19)


Stephen Rex Goode


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