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!” Luke 5:22-26
This High Priest of ours understands our weaknesses, for he faced all of the same testing’s we do, yet he did not sin. So let us come boldly to the throne of our gracious God. There we will receive his mercy, and we will find grace to help us when we need it most. Hebrews 4:15-16
A simple act of faith will produce incredible unpredictable results. Jesus has said that if you have faith as large as a mustard seed, you will have locked within you the ability to see God do amazing things. The last thing the enemy will want you to see is that this potential within you is the reality of God. We look at things with our own limited reality and come up short every time because we always put God in a small box. God’s reality is this that He can do anything, anytime, anywhere, anyway. The four men carrying the paralyzed man saw this obstacle of the great crowd, but did not allow that to stop them from getting their friend healed by Jesus. They had heard the stories and were willing to look foolish; foolish enough to pop open a roof and lower this man down to Jesus to be healed. Let’s break down what a simple act of faith is so that we can disregard what the enemy has to say about it.
First faith begins with prayer. Faith is always built on prayer and what we are hoping for. The four guys here show the act of prayer by going around the obstacle of the crowd. When we pray that is what we are doing, we are not allowing the world to dictate what is going to be reality, we are going around the limited reality that we see and are putting an act of trust in our great God who can do anything. The man on the cot also believed that he could be healed by Jesus and had the faith to put his fate in those hands of his friends. Faith starts with a trusting prayer.
The next idea is they had a determined hope. If they could just see Jesus, they knew this man would be healed. This crowd was not going to stop them; they had to figure out a way around the crowd. Their determined hope was enough to allow themselves to become a spectacle in front of a large crowed and put their faith in Jesus to heal this friend of theirs. A determined hope will get you past any opposition that you may face. As an added bonus always know that the opposition you face is the encouragement you need to keep on keeping on.
The last idea is a courageous love. As I Corinthians 13 puts, the greatest of these is love. A courageous love is willing to look foolish in order to get something accomplished for someone whom you love. You put no conditions on your love and you expect nothing back. A courageous love has all the gaps filled in by God as shown in the above verses in Hebrews. A courageous love will impress Jesus and healing will happen. Jesus first said that the man’s sins were forgiven. We all have sinned and have fallen short, Jesus forgave this man his sins first because it was life circumstances that had him crippled, not his sin. Some people take this as his sins were the cause of his being crippled, which is the farthest from the truth. The man may have been afraid to be in the presence of Jesus because he felt he was unclean. Jesus the come as you are Lord, did the cool thing first, forgave him his sins, then did the coolest thing ever and healed him. Jesus’ unconditional love for you and your unconditional love will work hand in hand to see healing in your life or healing in a friend’s life.
A simple act of faith begins with a trusting prayer, then a determined hope, and a courageous love. Have Jesus fill in the rest with His unconditional love and you will see amazing things happen in this lifetime.
© [David Howard], [David’s Body Temple], 2011-2015.