Regardless of what it is you do for a living, or what sort of education you might be pursuing, you have no doubt read many job descriptions. In my previous job as an engineer, I’ve written a few job descriptions myself. So I can attest that it’s extremely difficult—I know what it is I want for a person in a particular position to do, but how do I summarize that in a few sentences?
But have you ever stopped to think about what your job description as a Christian is? I’ll have to admit I never really did, but an awful event last summer made me stop and think about it: My niece committed suicide. Needless to say, it was a difficult time for my entire family, and our hearts will continue to grieve for a very long time.
After the news had sunk in, my brother and sister-in-law asked if I would be willing to conduct her funeral service. I knew this would be difficult, especially since I had never performed a funeral service before. In preparing for the service, I struggled to find a scripture that would give comfort in the wake of the emotional pain that led to the end of my niece Kaitlynn’s life. After talking it over with my pastor, he suggested that Luke 4:18-19 might be helpful. This is where Christ said, “The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me, because He has anointed Me to preach the gospel to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed; to proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord” (emphasis added).
On an intellectual and theological level, I understood that my niece would have an opportunity to live again in the second resurrection (Revelation 20:4-5). But this verse brought home the fact that Jesus wasn’t done working in her life, and that she would have an opportunity to someday be healed of the emotional pain that hurt her. It was then that I first realized that this verse could very well be used as Jesus Christ’s job description!
It’s certainly true to say that He came to earth to establish the New Covenant (Hebrews 12:24) and to show us the loving intent of God’s law (Matthew 22:37-40). It’s also true to say that He will come again to remove Satan from the picture (Revelation 20:2, 10) so all mankind will have a chance to live God’s way of life in peace. But those things describe events Jesus Christ will perform while doing His job. Christ’s job description is, among other things listed there, to heal the brokenhearted.
Our Part in Jesus’ Job Description
So how does that apply to us? It wasn’t your or my blood that was shed for the remission of sin (Matthew 26:28). It’s not by our lives that men are saved (Romans 5:10). But as disciples of Christ, can we take something from His job description to heal the brokenhearted, and apply it to our jobs as Christians? I think so!
When I first read this verse as a job description for Jesus Christ, I understood more clearly what His part in the job was. And after thinking about it a bit, I came to understand that we can all take on the job of healing the broken hearts of those around us by emulating His life. Being a disciple of Jesus means offering encouragement, hope and love to those who are in need. But after the death of my niece, I came to a new realization: My heart was broken, too. I knew Christ was going to heal other people’s heart. I knew I could be a source of encouragement to others who had broken hearts. But it took a great personal tragedy to realize that I needed healing as well.
That’s where brethren from our local (and not-so-local) congregations came in. Our family received a flood of cards, kind words, soft smiles and warm hugs in the days and weeks after my niece’s death. You see, all those people were already actively working to heal a broken heart they saw. In those words, smiles and moments of compassion, I saw and felt Christ healing me and my family. This brings up yet another aspect of our jobs as Christians: We need to open up and allow ourselves to receive the gift of healing for our broken hearts.
There are a lot of things Jesus Christ will perform when He returns to establish the Kingdom of God. But at the core of His job, He is coming to heal the broken hearts of all mankind.