We like to compare ourselves to the people from the Bible. But it’s usually the strong, noble ones that we look to for inspiration. Like Esther and her unwavering faith in the face of adversity, or Paul’s resolute attitude about his imprisonment. They did amazing things for the kingdom of God. And sometimes we are like them, empowered and ready to fight the good fight. But other times we are more like the paralyzed man in Matthew 9 who had to be carried to Jesus. At first glance his story seems like a sad one and not someone we would want to be like. But God’s word is clear that this man and his friends had faith in Jesus and what He could do.
Then behold, they brought to Him a paralytic lying on a bed. When Jesus saw their faith, He said to the paralytic, “Son, be of good cheer, your sins are forgiven you.”
And at once some of the scribes said within themselves, “This Man blasphemes!”
But Jesus, knowing what was in their thoughts, said, “Why do think evil in your hearts? For which is easier, to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven you,’ or to say ‘Arise and walk’? But that you may know that the Son of Man has power on earth to forgive sins”- then He said to the paralytic, “Arise, take up your bed, and go to your house.” And he arose and departed to his house.
Now when the multitudes saw it, they marveled and glorified God, who had given such power to men.
Jesus is the goal of every believer. And to experience His healing touch when we are weak is what we need most. Within this story, I see two ways for us to get to Him.
First, we are like the paralytic man who needed to be carried to Jesus. He had faith that Jesus could heal him if only he could find a way to get to Him. But he couldn’t do it on his own, so his friends carried him to Jesus. Just like this man, we all have times of weakness. It may be a physical, emotional, mental or spiritual pain. Whatever the cause, we need a friend to carry us to the Savior, because we are not strong enough to get to Jesus on our own. In our pain, they are the light that leads us to Jesus, the only One who can heal us of our hurt.
Second, we are like the friends of the paralytic man. They too had faith that Jesus could heal their friend. So, they made a plan, put their friend on a bed and carried him to Jesus to be healed. Sometimes, the roles are reversed and our loved ones are weak and need us to carry them to Jesus. It’s our turn to be the light pointing the way to Jesus. As much as we may want to fix whatever is hurting them, the best thing we can do, is to be a friend who will take them to Jesus so that He can heal their pain.
We are not always strong, sometimes we’re weak. But that’s okay. Because Jesus said, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” 2 Corinthians 12:9 If we are willing to accept that God can use us even in our weakness, then a whole new world of opportunity opens up for us to serve in God’s kingdom. We can display the same kind of faith that the paralytic man and his friends showed by taking our hurts to Jesus. Then, when we allow Jesus to work through us, even when we are weak, we are strong. The next time we find that we are weak or that a friend is in need, let’s remember that Jesus is the only One who can truly heal us. Carry or be carried, either way, just get to Jesus and be healed by His grace and power!
My new art book Jesus Name Above All Names
will be FREE for you to download.
This Saturday, Sunday and Monday only! (Nov. 25-27)
Please click on the picture below to "purchase" the ebook version.
And if you could leave a review I would greatly appreciate it.
Each and every review helps me to get the name of Jesus
in front of more people.
I truly hope that you will be encouraged
and feel inspired by the artwork in this book!
Picked Just For You...
Don't Miss these Posts from Master's Hand Collection!
We celebrate our friendships. Especially those with our sisters in Christ. We feel that we have a special bond with our Christian girlfriends that we just don’t share with other people. We can open up about the hardships we face in life and share how our faith gets us through it.
But as much as we cherish these friendships, the truth is that sometimes they end. One day your relationship is thriving and the next thing you know, it’s over. I’m not talking about a casual friendship or someone that you see in passing, but rather that one girlfriend that you shared a deep and intimate friendship with. You told each other everything and you felt that you were closer than sisters. This is the girlfriend that you thought would be there for you until the bitter end. The one girlfriend that you thought you would never be unfriended by.
Maybe you had a falling out, or maybe you have no idea what went wrong. Either way, they’ve left you in the dust and moved on. Their life seems to be moving forward and you are standing still wondering what happened. The pain is real and somehow the idea that it was another Christian who hurt you makes it so much worse. You feel alone and betrayed.
The words of David speak so well in a time like this. He too knew the pain of being abandoned by a close friend.
For it is not an enemy who reproaches me;
Then I could bear it.
Nor is it one who hates me who has exalted
Himself against me;
Then I could hide from him.
But it was you, a man my equal,
My companion and my acquaintance.
We took sweet counsel together,
And walked to the house of God in the throng…
Cast your burden on the Lord,
And He will sustain you.
Psalm 55:12-14; 55:22
David was in terrible pain. It was not an enemy who had betrayed him. It was his companion and confidant, someone who David had worshipped God with. But in his grief, he was reminded to cast his burden on God, his one true friend. So what do you do when a friend hurts you? How can you find comfort and strength to move on?
Find closure if you can. Go to this friend and ask them what happened. Why are they shunning you? Let them know that you want to work it out. Maybe your relationship can be saved, maybe it can’t. But at least you will know that you tried to fix the problem.
Realize that God has a plan for your life and for theirs. God brings people together for a reason and sometimes He pulls them apart for another. It’s hard for us to understand this because we can’t see the future, but God has a reason for everything He does. Pray and ask God what His reason is. You may be surprised by the answer.
Wish your friend well and move on. Proverbs 17:17 says “A friend loves at all times.” Love and forgiveness may seem like an impossible feat at a time like this, but God can give you the heart to do it. Give it some time and try to move forward with your life. Forgiveness will come.
One of the most painful things we can go through is the breakup of a close friendship. It’s easy to become jaded and think you’ll never find another friend that close again. But if we turn to God we will find the comfort and strength that we are looking for. Our Heavenly Father loves us and wants to give us wonderful blessings.
Dear Heavenly Father, I’ve been hurt by a close friend. I come to You now asking for the comfort that only You can provide. Please fill my heart with love and acceptance. Please help me to forgive and move forward with Your plan for my life, and please be with my friend as she moves on as well. I know that You have our best interest in mind and that you will take care of both of us. Thank you for Your gentleness in guiding me back to where I need to be. In Jesus name, Amen.
Don't Miss These Posts by Master's Hand Collection!
Follow me on Twitter
(P.S. I follow back.)
Like me on Facebook
About the Artist
Connie Rowland is the Artist and Blogger behind Master's Hand Collection, a series of Christian artwork that depicts God's hand in our lives. Each picture features an inspirational word spelled out in American Sign Language with a corresponding Bible verse. Check out the About page for more info on Master's Hand Collection and Connie.
Where I Linkup