And when he returned to Capernaum after some days, it was reported that he was at home. And many were gathered together, so that there was no more room, not even at the door. And he was preaching the word to them. And they came, bringing to him a paralytic carried by four men. And when they could not get near him because of the crowd, they removed the roof above him, and when they had made an opening, they let down the bed on which the paralytic lay. And when Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralytic, “Son, your sins are forgiven.” Now some of the scribes were sitting there, questioning in their hearts, “Why does this man speak like that? He is blaspheming! Who can forgive sins but God alone?” And immediately Jesus, perceiving in his spirit that they thus questioned within themselves, said to them, “Why do you question these things in your hearts? Which is easier, to say to the paralytic, ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, ‘Rise, take up your bed and walk’? But that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins”—he said to the paralytic—“I say to you, rise, pick up your bed, and go home.” And he rose and immediately picked up his bed and went out before them all, so that they were all amazed and glorified God, saying, “We never saw anything like this!”
There are times in our lives when we need help from others. The past few weeks as my concussion is healing I have had to ask for help from many folks since I am supposed to be taking it easy and letting the swollen brain heal. I do not like needing help from others. Yet I have learned in these past weeks of the depth of others faith, the kindness and compassion that is there and the willingness to do extraordinary things for the good of others.
Jesus was mobbed by folks who had heard of his ministry and the healing that was going on. They cam from all over and were pressed in so close that the people who were carrying their paralyzed friend could not get close. They didn't give up and go home. They used their strength and their creativity to bring their friend close. They persisted because of love, and in their persistence their friend was healed and the religious authorities were silenced. Love in our hearts and persistence can bring healing and change the world despite the doubters and the naysayers. God aches for us to be full of love, compassion and faith, for the little we can do can change everything.
Today I ask God to help me do my part. May we walk in faith, not giving up when things get rough or when we are rebuffed. May we remember the faithful friends who opened up the roof and be people who are willing to use our God given gifts for the healing of others. May we imagine possibilities this day, and think beyond the predictable so that God's love may be known in our midst.