I am the leader of a large professional organization. I have two committees working on important projects. When it comes time to announce the progress or success of the committees, I make it a point to honor the committee members for their work. They otherwise are not known or visible, and so otherwise not recognized.
If we want to advance the purposes of the Kingdom, we need to get clear about recognizing the invisible God we serve. Just before Jesus encounters and heals the leper described in this verse, he has come down from the mountain “with the cheers of the crowd still in his ears.” [Message]. He is getting a lot of attention, attention He doesn’t want. He is not a worldly King, and He is not a miracle dispensing machine, a novelty or a craze. What He wants is for people to be God focused and awake to what God wants and what God is doing.
So, Jesus, in a tender, private moment with a healed leper, tells the leper, who is of course overflowing with excitement and joy: “Go quietly to the priest, and tell him of your healing.” Jesus tells him to rejoice not only because he has a healed body, but because he has a healed life. Then he tells him to live that healed life as a living testimony. In the Message version, he tells him to let people see by his actions how grateful he is to God.
Jesus is continuously pointing to His Father by His ministry, miracles and teaching. He is not “grabbing attention” he is directing attention. When I serve God, my goal is to make God more visible to people. My goal is to have them stand at attention before a clear evidence of a mighty hand behind mere human actions. In the words of John the Baptist as he prepared the way for the Messiah, “I am becoming less, and He is becoming more.”
Let this question be the mantra that guides through the many tasks of your day: “How can I do this, or say this, in such a way that You my King will be more visible?”