Please read Luke 5:17-26
This story of the paralyzed man healed and forgiven by Jesus also shows up in the Gospels of Mark and Matthew. In each story Jesus forgives first, then heals his physical condition. In each story the paralyzed man is only able to receive the healing he needs because of his determined friends. It’s a story of healing, friendship, and forgiveness.
I invite you to read through this scripture three times today, pausing to reflect in between each reading.
Reflection question: When Jesus saw the faith of the man’s friends, he said to the man, ‘Friend, your sins are forgiven.’ Isn’t it interesting that Jesus commented on the faith of the friends? How is healing a group effort in your life?
Reflection question: In this story forgiveness is linked with healing. Remember a time when you forgave someone else. How hard was it to forgive? How did you feel in your heart when you forgave? How did you feel in your body?
Jesus tells the man to “stand up and take your bed and go to your home.” The man has a brand new start as a physically healed person, but he also has a brand new start as a forgiven person. Asking for and receiving forgiveness can be as transformative as physical healing. How has being forgiven transformed you? Do you need to hear words of forgiveness? From whom?
As you let this story live in you today, play with it. Explore it, wonder with it, and ask it questions. And may your time in God’s word bless you!
In Peace, Pastor Ruth
Let us pray:
Lord God, your lovingkindness always goes before us and follows after us. Summon us into your light, and direct our steps in the ways of goodness that comes through our life together in Christ. Send your Spirit to enlighten us this week as we serve, pray, rest, and act; trusting that your grace goes before us. We pray in the name of Jesus who shows us the face and love of God, Amen.