A Friend in Need…
Lord, please speak to me through Your Word today and help me recognize Your voice.
Read LUKE 5:17-26
 One day Jesus was teaching, and Pharisees and teachers of the law were sitting there. They had come from every village of Galilee and from Judea and Jerusalem. And the power of the Lord was with Jesus to heal the sick.  Some men came carrying a paralyzed man on a mat and tried to take him into the house to lay him before Jesus.  When they could not find a way to do this because of the crowd, they went up on the roof and lowered him on his mat through the tiles into the middle of the crowd, right in front of Jesus.  When Jesus saw their faith, he said, “Friend, your sins are forgiven.”  The Pharisees and the teachers of the law began thinking to themselves, “Who is this fellow who speaks blasphemy? Who can forgive sins but God alone?”  Jesus knew what they were thinking and asked, “Why are you thinking these things in your hearts?  Which is easier: to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, ‘Get up and walk’?  But I want you to know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins.” So he said to the paralyzed man, “I tell you, get up, take your mat and go home.”  Immediately he stood up in front of them, took what he had been lying on and went home praising God.  Everyone was amazed and gave praise to God. They were filled with awe and said, “We have seen remarkable things today.” Scripture taken from the THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION, NIV Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
ReflectHow did the friends take part in the man's healing?
As we read through Luke, the news about Jesus is spreading. Somehow the paralyzed man in today’s passage comes to hear that this Jesus is going around healing people and today is at a house nearby. But the man has a problem: without help, he can’t get to where Jesus is. Thankfully, this man’s friends carry him to the house where Jesus is teaching, but they can’t get him inside (19). The friends must have gone from hope and excitement to disappointment and frustration. I wish we could eavesdrop on their conversation. I imagine some were for giving up and going home–maybe they could try again another day, maybe it just wasn’t to be. Others were more stubborn: we’ve come this far, we can’t give up now!The friends come up with a plan which at first seems risky… but as they talk about it, they realize that it’s not only realistic and plausible, it is also their only hope of getting to where Jesus is. As we know, the plan works. Their friend is in the presence of Jesus. And the first thing Jesus does is to note the faith of his friends (20). We too have friends who have problems that only Jesus can resolve. Our role, as friends, is to find a way of bringing them into Jesus’ presence.
Bring your friends before God in prayer, and take the life of God to them through words and actions that reflect his love.
God, may my lips faithfully speak of Your goodness and love and may my life reflect Your light.
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