Daily Dose, Lent — March 29

And just then some people were carrying a paralyzed man lying on a bed. When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralytic, "Take heart, son; your sins are forgiven." Then some of the scribes said to themselves, "This man is blaspheming." But Jesus, perceiving their thoughts, said, "Why do you think evil in your hearts? For which is easier, to say, 'Your sins are forgiven,' or to say, 'Stand up and walk?' But so that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins" — he then said to the paralytic — "Stand up, take your bed and go to your home." And he stood up and went to his home. When the crowds saw it, they were filled with awe, and they glorified God, who had given such authority to human beings. Matthew 9:2-8     Daily Dose with Dr. Don Martin: Journey to the Cross, a Lenten Devotional   The healing of the paralyzed man is a great moment in the story about Jesus. The Lord was teaching people about God in somebody’s home in Capernaum. Four people brought their paralyzed friend to the house, hoping Jesus would heal him as he had other people. They could not get into the house because it was packed with listening people. So, they poked a hole in the roof and lowered the stretcher into the room. Now Jesus must have been teaching on forgiveness, because he stirred up a controversy by pronouncing the man forgiven. “Only God can forgive!” was the complaint of the religious leaders in the room. “Exactly!” said Jesus. So, to prove his authority to forgive, Jesus gave the paralyzed man the power to walk. Everybody in the room said it was an awesome moment and clear evidence that Jesus could forgive. Too many people are crippled by guilt and shame. Jesus is still able and ready to forgive and put our walking feet on the path to a good life. Maybe we could pull the roof off the sanctuary and lower people to the altar. Or have a “tote in your friend Sunday,” where we carry each other to the kneeling place. Or, we could begin forgiving each other as Christ forgives us all. Dr. Don Martin