Get creative, get closer

Happy New Year. 

Let me retell a story, perhaps one of my favourites found in Mark 2. 

Huge crowds had gathered around Jesus, so many people that there just wasn’t any space left as Jesus was teaching truth and healing the sick. 

The house he was in must have been heaving, with people filling every space, and outside the same thing, crowds pushing and standing, filling the immediate area. 

A group of mates arrived, four of them carrying their friend who was paralyzed. Having looked around they soon realised there was no way to get this bloke and themselves past the crowd, into the house and in front of Jesus. 

Someone in the group must have had the idea, ‘The roof! Right lads, let’s get up there, dig a hole the size of this stretcher and lower Terry down’, and that’s what they did. 

Pulling away at the roof until the space had been made, I can only imagine Jesus looking up as he was talking and small bits of roof debris falling to the floor. Faces looking through the hole to check they have the right spot and them digging on almost in desperation to get their friend to Jesus’ feet. Desperation! 

With the hole achieved, perhaps a very angry home owner and a crowd of onlookers, the man is lowered in front of Jesus.

When Jesus saw their faith, he said “Son, your sins are forgiven.”

Mark 2:1

This moment was epic. Jesus forgives the man’s sins, challenges the mindset of the teachers of law in the room, displays his authority to forgive sins, and then goes on to heal the bloke.

A lot happened after a few blokes decided that they had to get their mate as close to Jesus as they could. I like that. 

My challenge this year is – let’s continue to be those men. To feel something of that urgency and desperation to be creative, with integrity and authenticity, to get our mates closer to the Jesus that has set us free.