What an amazing recovery! A total transformation had been accomplished! A completely new man had just emerged from years of homelessness, violence, bondage and virtual insanity! Living under torment of the devil in graveyards and often driven into the wilderness, this captive was frequently bound with chains and fetters, and possessed with many demons. Sound familiar? His situation couldn't have been any worse! (Our problems are no match for this man's troubles!) His whole life changed however, when Jesus confronted him, and he found himself sitting in Jesus' presence, clothed and in his right mind.
The first thought is very encouraging. The solution to even the most defiant problems in this world is found in the person of Jesus Christ. In what may have been only a few minutes, that maniac found peace and purpose in his life. The answer is simply a Person, not a philosophy, or a system of gradual improvement. That man of Gadara certainly could not help himself, and so our need can similarly only be met by Christ himself.
Second is the reality of our greatest effectiveness, our central purpose. I notice more than the new purpose is the location of that purpose. This man wanted to continue to stay in Jesus' presence, a natural desire seeing all that had just happened to him. But he was told, "return to thine own house, and show how great things God hath done unto thee." Wouldn't he have preferred to see thousands fed, multitudes healed, and witness first hand the converting of hundreds of his fellow countrymen in great need? But the Lord knew that he would be more effective going home. Indeed, it says that "he went his way, and published throughout the whole city how great things Jesus had done unto him."
As easy as it is to envy another setting, a different set of circumstances, a completely new set of people, we are told that as with the candle, we are to let the light shine to all that are in the house. Those in our family who know us best will recognize the genuineness of a life transformed by the Lord Jesus Christ. And it is usually there that the greatest challenges can be found. Genuine Christianity is first evidenced by Christ's wonderful work done within our own family! We have been placed exactly where all circumstances are right for our growth and our most effective impact. (Luke chapter 8 and Matthew chapter 5)