“When Jesus saw their faith, He said to the paralytic, “Son, your sins are forgiven.”
-Mark 2:5 (NRSV)
FRIENDS WITH A PERSISTENT FAITH
Jesus has returned to his home in Capernaum. A great crowd gathered in and around the house. So many, that even the front door was blocked. At the same time four friends had heard about Jesus’ arrival and picked up their paralyzed friend to take him to Jesus. They arrived too late to get into the house and found every entrance blocked. They knew in their hearts there had to be a way to bring their paralyzed friend to Jesus. They studied the house and began to debate the best method.
After some discussion, they decided to go to the roof of the house and create a hole in the roof, which would allow them to lower their friend into the house. When they had climbed to the top of the roof, they began to remove parts of the roof above Jesus. When they had dug through the roof, they lowered their friend into the house. Immediately, Jesus saw the man and looked up to see the faces of four friends expectantly looking back at Jesus. Jesus saw in their faces a faith of trust and hope. He immediately, said to the man, “Son, your sins are forgiven.”
Upon hearing this the religious leaders in the crowd, began to question the authority Jesus had taken in forgiving the man. Immediately Jesus responded by saying, “Why do you raise such questions in your heart? Which is easier to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven” or to say “Stand up and take your mat and walk?” In an act to demonstrate his authority, Jesus said to the paralyzed friend of the four, “Stand up and take your mat and go home.” Immediately the man stood and went home.
“A simple act driven by their hearts, full of compassion. Rewarded by Jesus who saw in their faces a trusting faith”.
Four friends knew in their hearts that Jesus could help their friend. When blocked they responded with a faithful ingenuity and found a way. A way that changed the course of a life. A simple act driven by their hearts, full of compassion. Rewarded by Jesus who saw in their faces a trusting faith.
“Our hearts’ sense when our neighbors are in need and when we reach out we can change the course of their lives.”
There are those times in our lives when we have to lift up our neighbors, when they can’t. Maybe through providing a meal, or a ride, perhaps even a prayer that is filled with a deep sense of compassion. Our hearts’ sense when our neighbors are in need and when we reach out we can change the course of their lives. All we need is a persistent and trusting faith.
Blessings, until next time,
Bruce L. Hartman