When he heard that John had been arrested, he withdrew to Galilee. From that time on, Jesus began to preach and say, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.” Matthew 4:12, 17
It all happened when our dear father suffered a heart attack, Tatang spent some months in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU). When we took him home, our father was bedridden and was paralyzed more than half of his body. Our brother Emil decided go back home to be our father’s full-time nurse. He saw the vacancy. Seeing he was needed at home to look after our father, Emil didn’t think twice to take responsibility of the task at hand. Seeing his siblings will have hard time to do the nursing and care giving, technically, Emil offered his life. Beyond being a nurse, he was a son. He ate with our father. He slept beside our father. He gave him love and triple A class nursing care. He comforted our mother. He taught us how to take care of our parents. He stepped up.
Jesus, seeing John was arrested, stepped up. He took the responsibility of proclaiming “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.” He stepped up to the plate and He went around all of Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom, and curing every disease and illness among the people (Matthew 4:23). He took care of God’s people as they brought to him all who were sick with various diseases and racked with pain, those who were possessed, lunatics, and paralytics, and he cured them (Matthew 4:24). Jesus stepped up.
Jesus does this in our lives. He steps up. When we lack, He provides. When we worry, He assures and He comforts. When we doubt, He fulfills promises. When we are enslaved, He frees us. When we are troubled, He is our refuge. When Jesus sees a vacancy in our lives, He fills the void. Jesus steps up.
Would you step up? When someone is having hard time, give your time. When someone is struggling, offer love and support. When someone is in need, provide your presence. When someone is constrained, stretch your hands.
There’s always a vacancy. Step up.