As my friend meditated on the story of healing the paralytic in Mark 2 some new thoughts hit her. This was the man who could not come to Jesus himself but his friends let him down through the roof where Jesus was teaching.
Yes it was wonderful that the man was healed. Yes, there is the added lesson of the authority of Jesus to forgive sins. But what she found herself zeroing in on were the four men who went to such trouble to get their friend to Jesus.
There were no elevators in those days; no wheelchairs; no ambulances. If that were not enough, there were some pretty tough obstacles to overcome. They had to travel through crowds, dissemble a roof; and what did they use to steady their friend’s mat as they lowered him into the room?
What kind of friends were these four men? Were they boyhood chums? Had they shared games and school and secrets together? We don’t know those details but we know the result. Their friend who was now paralyzed needed help and they could do something for him that he could not do for himself. It would cost them but they would do it anyhow.
Do you have a friend who would keep a prayer vigil with you if you were in a coma? Do you have a friend who would not give up on you no matter how impossible your situation? Do you have one who would move heaven and earth to get you to Jesus?
Now think — are YOU that kind of friend? Who do you know that is in need of YOUR mat ministry?