For a more enriching experience,
go down on your knees to pray or take it one step further
and prostrate yourself (lay face down) on the floor while praying.
Father, today's reading is powerful in so many ways. There is the example of profound Faith by the men lowering the sick man through the roof. There is the profound Faith of the sick man himself agreeing to it. There is the example of a possible 'burden of guilt' by the sick man and how it not only hurt him spiritually but how it took a toll on his physical body. There is the example of judgment and impulse without thinking by the crowd. And there is the example of how rebellious, courageous and wise Jesus was. He asks them the question, "Which is easier . . " and rightfully they answer that it is indeed easier to 'say' that the man's sins are forgiven, rather than walk when it was obvious that the man was paralyzed. But then Jesus goes on to tell the paralytic man that not only are His sins forgiven, because He has the power to forgive them, but He tells the paralytic man to pick up his mat and walk. Who knows what day this was on because if it were the Sabbath it would have been against religious practice to carry your mat, which Jesus showed us in John 5:1-16. So basically Jesus is saying to the crowd, "Not only can I forgive His sins but I can also heal him. I'll do both!" He gave them the question of, "Which is easier . . ." suggesting one but Jesus does both. I LOVE THIS SCRIPTURE! Jesus does it all. I LOVE IT! The forgiveness, the healing of paralysis and the instruction to pick up his mat was probably just too much and over-the-top for the crowd to digest and reconcile in their mind. Jesus does it all.
Thank You for this reading today and for the prayer below that Jesus taught us in Matthew 6:9-13, which causes me to wonder from the forgiveness line below, "Do I really want You to forgive me in the same way that I forgive others?" Where it says, "as we" . . . I should be thinking, "as I".
Who art in heaven
Hallowed by thy Name
Thy Kingdom come
Thy Will be done
As it is in heaven
And give us this day
Our daily bread
And forgive us trespasses
As we, forgive those who trespass against us
And let us not
but deliver us from evil
For Thine is the Kingdom
And the Power
And the Glory
A reading from the Holy Gospel according to Mark
1 When Jesus returned to Capernaum after some days, it became known that He was at home.
2 Many gathered together so that there was no longer room for them, not even around the door, and He preached the Word to them.
3 They came bringing to Him a paralytic carried by four men.
4 Unable to get near Jesus because of the crowd, they opened up the roof above Him. After they had broken through, they let down the mat on which the paralytic was lying.
5 When Jesus saw their faith, He said to the paralytic, "Child, your sins are forgiven."
6 Now some of the scribes were sitting there asking themselves,
7 "Why does this man speak that way? He is blaspheming. Who but God alone can forgive sins?"
8 Jesus immediately knew in His mind what they were thinking to themselves, so He said, "Why are you thinking such things in your hearts?
9 Which is easier, to say to the paralytic, 'Your sins are forgiven,' or to say, 'Rise, pick up your mat and walk'?
10 But that you may know that the Son of Man has authority to forgive sins on earth"
11 He said to the paralytic, "I say to you, rise, pick up your mat, and go home."
12 He rose, picked up his mat at once, and went away in the sight of everyone. They were all astounded and glorified God, saying, "We have never seen anything like this."
The Gospel of the Lord
Praise to You Lord Jesus Christ
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