Matthew 8:1-4, 9:1-17
Mark 2:2-5, “Soon the house where He was staying was so packed with visitors that there was no more room, even outside the door. While He was preaching God’s word to them, four men arrived carrying a paralyzed man on a mat. They couldn’t bring him to Jesus because of the crowd, so they dug a hole through the roof above his head. Then they lowered the man on his mat, right in front of Jesus. Seeing their faith, Jesus said to the paralyzed man, ‘My child, your sins are forgiven.’”
“You just need a little faith!” This phrase is easier said than done. When life is great, faith is easy. But when the rubber hits the road and things don’t go according to plan, it’s hard to trust that God is in control.
In today’s reading, Jesus gives a pat on the back to a couple of men’s faith. They were convinced that He could heal their paralyzed friend. Since so many had gathered to hear Him speak, the men couldn’t get close enough to ask Jesus for this miracle, yet they were determined. They went to the trouble to carry the man onto the roof, dig a hole, and lower him down before the Savior. Surely, this required great effort. But they had faith that Jesus was the solution, and He most definitely was!
We should note two key points in this story. First, that having faith in God’s abilities pays off. The Bible says that if even we just have faith the size of a mustard seed (the smallest seed), we can move mountains. Wow! That’s pretty amazing. Second is the importance of surrounding ourselves with the right people. Are those closest to you people who point you towards Jesus — strong in faith, and obedient to God? Because friends are like elevators, they can take you up or pull you down.
Faith and friends of faith are crucial to our success. Trust that God is for you and has great things in store for your life. If you lack people of faith in your life, the church is the best place to meet such friends. After all, “you just need a little faith” as you pray for God to orchestrate such relationships and usher in the healing needed in your life!
Dear God, Thank You for being so ever-present. Strengthen my faith in You and deepen my dependence on You. Surround me with people who encourage me to draw closer to You, and help me to encourage others in the same way. In Jesus’ name, Amen.