15th October 2017
Sometimes a passage of scripture just sits on your heart for a while. For me at the moment it is the story of Jesus encountering a man lowered through the roof of a crowded building by his friends in the hope that Jesus will heal him (Mark 2:1-12).
There is plenty in this story that has the appearance of being wrong. The educated religious people already in the room scrutinising Jesus are convinced he is wrong when he forgives the man’s sin. The entrance of the man into the crowed room through a hole created in the roof by his friends, is certainly not the right way to enter a room; let alone the creation of a skylight where one was presumably not wanted.
Where are we in this story? Are we hanging around the periphery with heads full of right doctrine yet with hearts full of unspoken criticism, which Jesus nevertheless hears? Or are we the hopeful friends? Determined to help the least able among us and prepared to apply our determination and imagination to see a way around an impenetrable obstacle, in the hope that Jesus is the answer to our friend’s need.
In the story hope is credited as faith by Jesus and is rewarded over scholarly doctrine. Jesus affirms faith in action that goes beyond the ordinary whilst rounding on the critics who do not even speak out with the courage of their conviction.
Have we the courage and compassion to do the unexpected (in some eyes wrong thing), to do it together and to do it with Jesus?
Revd. Nigel Rodgers