Lenten Devotion: Thursday, March 5

Psalm 50Psalm 59Psalm 60 Psalm 19Psalm 46Genesis 39:1-231 Corinthians 2:14—3:15Mark 2:1-12

Then some people came, bringing to him a paralyzed man, carried by four of them. And when they could not bring him to Jesus, because of the crowd, they removed the roof above him; and after having dug through it, they let down the mat on which the paralytic lay. When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralytic, “Son, your sins are forgiven.”
Mark 2: 3-5

At St. Paul’s Ivy, we belong to a community of believers who truly care for one another. A glance towards the altar during Communion reveals parishioners rising to guide our brothers and sisters who struggle with physical stability. A glimpse into the Parish Hall shows several generations uniting in times of fellowship. A peek onto the playground gives witness to a child extending his hand to help a friend stand from a fall. Wherever I look, I see love and support.

Jesus healed a paralyzed man after he witnessed the faith of his four friends. They could not physically reach Jesus, but they were not deterred. They carried their friend, dismantled the home’s roof, and carefully lowered him into the home, not for themselves, but so their friend could be healed. Their love for Jesus was so strong that they wanted their friend to also know God’s love. Jesus could see their faith. How can we ensure that Jesus will see ours?

When we recite the Prayers of the People each Sunday, we pray for healing. We pray for those who are suffering, and we pray for those who are grieving. During this time, I can see the faith of our church community because of how I feel saying the words aloud with those surrounding me. I see God’s love in the usher who offers an arm, in the Coffee Hour hosts whose nourishment enables our community to join together, and in the child who runs to an injured friend without hesitation. I continue to pray that my own faith will resemble that of the paralytic’s friends, and I am thankful for the guidance and support I receive daily from the St. Paul’s Ivy community. I pray that you too will share in a visible faith.