31 January 2015
Reading: Mark 2; Psalms 26
The man jumped up, took the mat, and pushed his way through the stunned onlookers. Then they all praised God. “We’ve never seen anything like this before!” they exclaimed. (Mark 2:12 NLT)
Jesus and his followers returned to Capernaum, his adopted hometown on Lake Galilee, and planned to have a little time to debrief from their ministry adventures in the towns around the lake shore.
Before long, news got out of his return, and the little house near the lake where he and his friends were staying was packed with the curious, the skeptics, and good-hearted people who were hungry for God and his kingdom. And the sick and lame! Desperately ill people dragged themselves to the porch of the house. Determined friends brought a cripple on a stretcher and tore up the roof to get him to the healer.
Jesus marveled at their faith, forgave the man’s sins – forgave all his sins! – and healed him on the spot. Healed him completely so that he not only walked, he jumped up, picked up the makeshift stretcher he was carried in on, and headed home through the astonished crowd! They were stunned!
If I had been there, how “stunned” would I have been? And why?
• Would I have been stunned and trying to figure out how he did it, like when I watch David Blaine “levitate” on television?
• Would I have been stunned and feeling jealous and threatened, like the Pharisees?
• Would I have been stunned and thinking “Let’s figure out how to bottle this! I could be his agent! We could make a fortune!”
• Would I have been stunned and in awe of the power of God, and the kindness of his heart, and his gracious, forgiving love?
• Would I have been so stunned that I left everything to be a devoted follower of this Jesus who heals and forgives?
Father, Thanks for amazing me. Thanks for your amazing love and grace. Stunning! I am in awe of your power, your kindness, and your grace. I choose to follow you, to learn from you, and to allow your word and your spirit to change me daily. Amen.