Many years ago, just as I was about to board a train, two men hurried up. One was holding his arm at a peculiar angle and grimacing with pain. The diagnosis was obvious, and a hurried manipulation reduced a dislocated shoulder. The immediate relief from pain that spread across the man’s face was ample reward for a budding young practitioner.

Not long after a young boy was brought into my office, breathing with extreme difficulty. His cold sweat, pale face, and deep distress were signs of a severe asthmatic attack. I will never forget the expression of wonder that crossed his face after an injection of adrenalin brought a cessation of his symptoms.

Almost all of us have experienced the relief that comes when a severe toothache or some other acute pain ends, RELIEF we would gladly spell with capital letters.

But there is a greater relief and joy, spiritual in nature and more far-reaching than any relief from physical ills. It is the joy of salvation.

The average Christian shows little of this joy in his life. He is so burdened, confused, compromised, and unaware of his blessings that he lives in a state of spiritual frustration and defeat.

At the heart of the problem lies a failure to grasp either the enormity of sin or the wonder of God’s mercy and forgiveness. Once a woman of the streets came to the place where Jesus was being entertained, bringing with her a flask of precious ointment. This she poured on our Lord’s feet. Her tears of gratitude were evidence of her love as she wiped his feet with her hair and kissed them.

We do not know when she had come under the influence of the Saviour, but she obviously had been forgiven and had had her life changed. Now she came to honor the one who had redeemed her from the guilt and penalty ...

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