By Dave Coe
There are times when true friendship requires us to go the extra mile -- serving one another as we bring a friend(s) to Christ. Such was the case with the men in the story Jesus shares with us in the Gospel of Luke (5:18-19).
Some men came carrying on a stretcher a man who was paralyzed, and they tried to bring him in and lay him down in front of Jesus. But finding no way to bring him in because of the crowd, they went up on the roof [and removed some tiles to make an opening] and lowered him through the tiles with his stretcher, into the middle of the crowd, in front of Jesus.
As I read this scripture passage, some thoughts about friendship came to mind:
- It takes more than one person to carry your stretcher, helping you to get where you need to be.
- The men were determined, moved by love, motivated to see their friend healed by Jesus.
- They knew that healing paralysis was not a problem for Jesus, they were exercising their faith combining it with action.
- People who got in their way presenting their friend to Jesus only served as an opportunity to get creative –with perseverance.
- They had one goal in mind for their friend -- that is to put him “into the middle of the crowd, in front of Jesus”. Goal achieved.
One morning while meeting with our parish leadership, Bob asked this question out loud: “Who is carrying your stretcher?”
That is an excellent question for you, dear reader, to ask yourself.
As you do, please consider, pray, read and reflect on the following scripture.
1 Corinthians 12: 15-27
(Just click on the verse above and scroll down to verse 15)
Then think about the five closest friends whom God has given you. Spend time praying intentionally over each of these people. Then send them a text or a little note in the mail to encourage them in their week.
God Bless you and yours, Dave.
[Do you have questions or prayer requests? I am happy to pray for you and yours. Contact me at email@example.com[