Monday, 21 November 2016

Wet Autumn Thinks

Of course rain is essential - we plough the fields and scatter and all that but Devon is under a deluge at the moment - it is hardly bothering to get light today. It's easy to get all wistful about Autumn but I can live without it when it's like this. I'd even rather have a good old fashioned crisp cold snap.

Anyway, on to more edifying things. I was reading this.

17 One day as he was teaching, Pharisees and religion teachers were sitting around. They had come from nearly every village in Galilee and Judea, even as far away as Jerusalem, to be there. The healing power of God was on him.
18-20 Some men arrived carrying a paraplegic on a stretcher. They were looking for a way to get into the house and set him before Jesus. When they couldn’t find a way in because of the crowd, they went up on the roof, removed some tiles, and let him down in the middle of everyone, right in front of Jesus. Impressed by their bold belief, he said, “Friend, I forgive your sins.”
21 That set the religion scholars and Pharisees buzzing. “Who does he think he is? That’s blasphemous talk! God and only God can forgive sins.”
22-26 Jesus knew exactly what they were thinking and said, “Why all this gossipy whispering? Which is simpler: to say ‘I forgive your sins,’ or to say ‘Get up and start walking’? Well, just so it’s clear that I’m the Son of Man and authorized to do either, or both. . . .” He now spoke directly to the paraplegic: “Get up. Take your bedroll and go home.” Without a moment’s hesitation, he did it—got up, took his blanket, and left for home, giving glory to God all the way. The people rubbed their eyes, incredulous—and then also gave glory to God. Awestruck, they said, “We’ve never seen anything like that!”
I have always loved this. I love the fact of a bona fide miracle in the middle of it. The man can't walk and then he can. The loving-kindness of Jesus reaching in and reassuring the sick man that his sins are forgiven. The way the posh and the high ups are confounded by the way Jesus is with people. In the light of recent events though, I had been thinking about the role of the helpers - the sick man's friends. I was thinking about the call to be kind - to one another - and ignore what the "powerful" are doing. How determined were they to get their friend to Jesus? They arrive at the house and there is no way they will get in - just no room. Yet they drag the bed on to the roof and dig through and lower the bed before Jesus. I have no evidence but I just think of Jesus looking up and smirking at the faces of the friends as they peered down through the hole to see what would happen. 

So what does it make me think?

  • It makes me think that I should be determined to hear from Jesus. To push on and do whatever it takes until I find him in my circumstances
  • It strikes me that kindness is sometimes hard work. It doesn't always fall into our laps. We have to fight for the right things to happen.
  • I think that being kind is also not judging before you help someone. I have no idea about this man but something had been going on in his head. Jesus is careful to tell him that he is forgiven before he heals him. His friends aren't bothered with all that. They just want to see him well. Jesus can deal with anything else the man needs.
Comfort thinking as the rain pours.

1 comment

  1. That last sentence "Jesus can deal with it" is so comforting. He knows what we Really need, and he will provide. Right now that is the truth that's keeping me going. Working hard at the "helping without judging" thing too. Rain has been nonstop here in Dorset, tho I think you've had it worse. It will ease up soon (I hope)


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