Mark 2:1-12 (click here)
And they came, bringing to him a paralytic carried by four men. And when they could not get near him because of the crowd, they removed the roof above him, and when they had made an opening, they let down the bed on which the paralytic lay. And when Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralytic, “Son, your sins are forgiven.” (Mark 2:3-5)
How many times have you almost give up?
How many times have you almost lost faith?
How many times?
In my own life, the fight for faith has all too often seemed like a losing battle… and I know that I would surely be lost were it not for God’s gracious gift of community. In the darkness, when my faith cannot see, I’m surrounded by brothers and sisters who fight for me. Persevering in the faith is a community project. The fight of faith is one for an army… not merely individual soldiers.
In Mark 2, how many times had this paralytic almost given up? How many times had his friends almost lost faith? How many times? Yet, they fought the fight together. They made their way to Jesus together. They burrowed through that roof together. They lowered their friend to the feet of Jesus together…
And when Jesus saw THEIR faith… the faith of this paralytic and his friends… the faith of this community… the faith they had likely fought to sustain… Jesus saw THEIR faith… and sins were forgiven… limbs were restored… salvation was accomplished… by the grace of Jesus through faith.
I’m not sure if you feel like giving up right now…
I’m not sure if you are losing faith…
I’m not sure…
BUT, I am sure that God has given you a gracious gift in the cruciform community called the church. You are not alone in this fight of faith… you are not alone in your perseverance… you are not alone.
In the darkness, when your faith cannot see, you are surrounded by brothers and sisters who fight for you! Don’t isolate yourself and go at this alone. Perseverance is a community project… let the community be your army in the fight of faith! We are prepared to carry you to Jesus, burrow through any barrier, and lay you at his feet.