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I sat on the cold, hallway floor of the dorm, alone and shaken.
A dear one, facing a heartbreaking situation, had just called, asking me to pray. I knew this person would not share his request with anyone else.
I sat alone, crying, ashamed that I was letting him down. I didn’t feel that I could pray for myself, let alone someone else.
Depression gripped me. But instead of running to Jesus, I ran away.
Later that evening, I got a letter from my mother, who ended her correspondence by telling me she loved me, asking me to be good to myself. I knew she knew some of my struggles. I also knew she was praying.
It was on this night—when I was about to lose hope—that God began to turn things around for me. This time I ran back to Jesus, rather than away from Him. I found the healing I needed by rededicating my life to Him.
Who do we surround ourselves with, and why?
Do we give our trust to critical people who focus on who we have been, rather than who we are becoming?
Or do we surround ourselves with people who point us to Jesus and intercede on our behalf so we overcome obstacles that may be blocking our path to freedom?
One day Jesus taught those in a crowded house, including many Pharisees and teachers of the law, from every village of Galilee and from Judea and Jerusalem.says of that day,
And the power of the Lord was with Jesus to heal the sick. (NIV)
Yet the only healing recorded there was the healing of a man lowered down through the roof, since the crowds blocked entry any other way.
The sick man had others who carried him to Jesus. He was too broken to go by himself. Yet they did not turn around and go home when they saw the doorway blocked and the house full. When challenges blocked the path to freedom, they looked up and found another way.
Imagine the weight of carrying someone on a mat to the top of a roof. Now imagine the boldness to remove roof tiles to lower the man to Jesus. No doubt, a homeowner was going to be upset that they tore open the roof. Somebody would demand compensation and repair. Yet they were willing to do whatever was needed to get to Jesus—regardless of what people might think, regardless of the cost.
As these men lowered the man on the mat, right before Jesus,says:
When Jesus saw their faith, he said, “Friend, your sins are forgiven.”
Then after confronting the Pharisees and teachers of the law who accused Jesus in their hearts, Jesus healed the man physically as well. He said to the paralyzed man,
“I tell you, get up, take your mat and go home.”
And he did exactly that:
Immediately he stood up in front of them, took what he had been lying on and went home praising God. v.25
Do we have interceding friends who will press through to Jesus on our behalf, even when we are too weak to pray for ourselves? The faith of such friends gets the attention of Jesus.
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