Determined Not To Be Deterred

“And whoever compels you to go one mile, go with him two.”

Matthew 5:41

As I was reading the story of the paralyzed man in Luke’s gospel where his friends carried him to where Jesus was, sadly, due to the size of the crowd gathered to listen to Him teach they were unable to get in. Determined not to be deterred, these friends devised a plan. They carried their friend on a sleeping mat up on the roof where they removed some of the tiles and lowered their friend down in front of Jesus like a worm on a fishing hook in hopes Jesus would take the bait and heal him. And sure enough, Jesus did, line hook and sinker as they say!

Read the story for yourself and be encouraged knowing love will find a way! Pick up the story in Luke 5:17-26, “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. Some men came carrying a paralyzed man on a sleeping mat. They tried to take him inside to Jesus, 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. Seeing their faith, Jesus said to the man, “Young man, your sins are forgiven.” But the Pharisees and teachers of religious law said to themselves, “Who does he think he is? That’s blasphemy! Only God can forgive sins!”

Jesus knew what they were thinking, so he asked them, “Why do you question this in your hearts? Is it easier to say ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or ‘Stand up and walk’? So I will prove to you that the Son of Man has the authority on earth to forgive sins.” Then Jesus turned to the paralyzed man and said, “Stand up, pick up your mat, and go home!” And immediately, as everyone watched, the man jumped up, picked up his mat, and went home praising God. Everyone was gripped with great wonder and awe, and they praised God, exclaiming, “We have seen amazing things today!”

What’s the lesson for us? First and foremost, Jesus still heals. Being the same yesterday, today and forever Jesus still heals people according to His perfect will. Second, which really was the first thing that came to mind as I read the story, “love will find a way”. To me this story is like that of the Good Samaritan times four. I am making an assumption it took four guys to carry their friend to Jesus but in reality it might have been as few as two. The point is, love always finds a way. The guy needed healing so his friends carried him to Jesus. What a great reminder to carry our friends to Jesus in prayer. Our greatest blessings happen when we do something for someone who can’t do anything for us in return.

Luke tells us Jesus saw their faith? Whose faith did Jesus see? Was it the faith of the paralyzed man? It says seeing their faith which means more than one. I believe it was Jesus seeing the faith of the paralyzed mans friends which makes his healing that much more special. Sometimes hurting people don’t have the faith to believe Jesus can help them. The world is full of hurting people, many who might not be physically paralyzed like the man in this story but who are paralyzed by sin, and shame, anxiety and fear. Let this story be a reminder to me and you today of the importance of bringing our friends to Jesus. Imagine a world today where we are determined to not be deterred, to do everything in our power to carry our friends to Jesus. Remember, love will find a way!

“Therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, put on tender mercies, kindness, humility, meekness, longsuffering”

Colossians 3:12


Michael Osthimer





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