Read: Psalm 34:8; 2 Kings 5:1-3; John 1:45-50; John 4:28-30; John 4:39-42
This week, my husband took the coverings off the rosebushes. It's officially spring in my mind when that happens. We were glad to see that it appears that all the bushes survived the winter. A blessing since a few years ago, several were not alive in the spring. The new growth reminded me of how lovely the roses were last year. How gracious the Lord is to give us such colorful and fragrant blossoms. =When the flowers were especially lovely last year, I asked a friend to take some pictures of them so I could e-mail them to those who might appreciate their beauty. With that in mind, I e-mailed one friend, telling her I could send pictures since she, like me, loves flowers. She politely declined but said she would make it a point to drive by, which she did more than once. She told me that she would rather experience the beauty herself, rather than see it in a picture. I was happy for her to ‘come and see’.
“Come and see”. It is truly the only way to receive what Jesus has for us. Oh yes, I love to hear testimonies of what the Savior has done in the lives of those whom He has redeemed. It is precious, but there is nothing like experiencing His love for ourselves. In fact, receiving the gift of salvation can only be done in a one on one Shepherd to sheep relationship, John 10:11-15. The sweet words in Psalm 23 declare boldly that the Lord is "my Shepherd", not a shepherd. No wonder, the psalmist tells us to taste so that we can see that the Lord is good. Hearing what others say is sweet, and it should whet our appetites to grow closer to the Lord.
Once we have experienced Jesus' love, we have the awesome privilege of saying ‘come and see’. Let's take a glimpse into a few places in the scriptures that show us the joy others have had when they held out the challenge to taste and see that the Lord is good, Psalm 34:8.
1. 2 Kings 5:1-3-the young servant girl and Naaman.
Talk about three verses that pack a punch. We don't know her name or anything about her appearance. She was an Israelite maiden who had been taken captive by her country's enemy. She had become a servant in a foreign land, and she cared for the needs of Naaman's wife. Naaman was an important man who had a problem that he, in spite of his prominence, couldn't solve. He had leprosy. The maiden had no power, but she knew a God Who could do what mere man couldn't do, and she had something else. She cared and wanted Naaman to taste the goodness of God and receive the healing that only He could provide. Naaman could hear about God, but that wouldn't have been enough to heal his body or change his life. Praise God that he experienced the goodness of God for himself. 2 Kings 5:9-19 gives us every indication that the commander's life was not only made new physically, but it appears that he also came to know the joy of coming to believe in the One and Only God, 2 Kings 5:17.
2. John 1:45-50-Philip and Nathanael
Have you ever met a skeptic? If so, Nathanael and that person would be able to understand each other. Nathanael was honest enough to tell Philip what he thought of his assertion that he had found the One spoken of by Moses. No good thing, the skeptic said, could come out of Nazareth. I love Philip's response. Simple words. Come and see. Taste and see. No arguing or debating. He simply wanted Nathanael to experience this Promised One for himself. Then we read it. The truth Jesus spoke pierced the heart of Nathanael. A life was changed because he experienced God for himself. Nathanael discovered that Jesus knew all about him. What a revelation for this skeptic to have learned so quickly, all because Philip asked him to come and see.
3. John 4:28-30; John 4:39-42-the woman at the well and the Samaritans.
What an unlikely witness for Jesus this unnamed woman was. Surely, she was not part of those who considered themselves to be the movers and shakers. She had come to the well for her water at a time when the other women in the area were not there. It wasn't the pleasant time of day, neither in the cool of the morning or the evening. Yet, it was at this inopportune time that this most unlikely of ladies came to understand Who Jesus was, Messiah, John 4:26. What precious knowledge she received. This One Who knew all about her life had actually introduced Himself to her, telling her He was Messiah. No wonder she had to tell others to come and see. Imagine it. Jesus chose such an unlikely person to offer those in her village the opportunity to taste and see His goodness. And the Samaritans? Some believed because of her words about Jesus'
knowledge of everything that she had ever done. Others believed when they received her invitation to come and see.
What can each of us who belong to Jesus say? “Come and see. Taste and see that the Lord is good.”
After all, He loves us even though He has knowledge of each of our flaws and sins. He has given each of us a personal story to share with others.
Lord, Help us to boldly tell others about You. May You use us to give out the invitation that they come and see for themselves, Who You are and how much You love them.