17 One day while Jesus was teaching, some Pharisees and teachers of religious law were sitting nearby. (It seemed that these men showed up from every village in all Galilee and Judea, as well as from Jerusalem.) And the Lord’s healing power was strongly with Jesus.
18 Some men came carrying a paralyzed man on a sleeping mat. They tried to take him inside to Jesus, 19 but they couldn’t reach him because of the crowd. So they went up to the roof and took off some tiles. Then they lowered the sick man on his mat down into the crowd, right in front of Jesus. 20 Seeing their faith, Jesus said to the man, “Young man, your sins are forgiven.”
I wonder….did that young man ask his friends to take him to see Jesus- or did his friends, out of their great love for him know that he was suffering and needed help to get to Him?
Either way, there had to be an agreement between them.
The same agreement must be made within the Body of Christ today.
Look around- there are “paralyzed” people everywhere…rendered incapable of getting to Jesus by themselves because of pornography, fear, addiction to drugs, a terminal illness, unforgiveness, adultery, rage, bitterness, shame, jealousy, greed…. their pain may or may not be physical, but they are suffering nonetheless.
Of course, in order for this to happen, every man- or woman who needs help must be willing to lie down on a mat and ask their friends to carry them to the Healer. Furthermore, those friends must be willing to sacrifice their time, talent and treasure to get their friend to Jesus…even if it means busting a hole through the roof!
All of us, at one time or another are that young man- desperate to be able to stand up, pick up our mat and go home. And, all of us, at one time or another are those “friends” that must help them get to the only One who can forgive and restore.
2 Chronicles 7:14
14 Then if my people who are called by my name will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sins and restore their land.
4 Just as our bodies have many parts and each part has a special function, 5 so it is with Christ’s body. We are many parts of one body, and we all belong to each other.
6 In his grace, God has given us different gifts for doing certain things well. So if God has given you the ability to prophesy, speak out with as much faith as God has given you. 7 If your gift is serving others, serve them well. If you are a teacher, teach well. 8 If your gift is to encourage others, be encouraging. If it is giving, give generously. If God has given you leadership ability, take the responsibility seriously. And if you have a gift for showing kindness to others, do it gladly.
9 Don’t just pretend to love others. Really love them. Hate what is wrong. Hold tightly to what is good. 10 Love each other with genuine affection,[a] and take delight in honoring each other. 11 Never be lazy, but work hard and serve the Lord enthusiastically.[b] 12 Rejoice in our confident hope. Be patient in trouble, and keep on praying. 13 When God’s people are in need, be ready to help them….