LENT : A SEASON MARKED BY FAITH IN ACTION
When Jesus saw their faith,he said to the paralytic,”son,your sins are forgiven.” Mark 2:5
In 1923,the Jewish theologian, Martin Buber, wrote his famous book called I and Thou.The main point of Buber’s book is that there are two ways of relating to other people in our lives.We can see them as objects,Buber call it as the I-it relationship.A nd we can see others as having feelings,dreams like our own,what Buber calls the ‘I-thou relationship.We sometimes treat others as objects and measure their worth not by what they are but by what they are able to do for us.Surprisingly,here four people consider the value of useless,paralyzed person’s life as their own life.
Condition of Paralyzed Man-Wretched and Helpless
Modern medical field has now accepted the fact that there are psychosomatic diseases. That means ones physical condition is affected by the mental state of the person. Some types of headaches, stomach pains, and skin diseases are believed to be caused by mental conditions. It is well known that sudden fear or shock can cause high fever, heart attack and paralysis. It is quite possible that the unforgiving sins of this man might have made him paralytic. That led his life into a hopeless and worthless condition. At this juncture, these four friends entered into his life with expression of faith in action.
Comrades of paralyzed Man-Agents of pro-life actions and options
Martin Luther King said “Love is concern for the welfare of the other people”. They worked on the principle of Kingdom of God Ethics. Kingdom ethics is always against market ethics. Only the smart, efficient, healthy and rich can thrive in the market system. This paralyzed man is not smart, not healthy could not walk, has no power. But he was a man of worth for his friends. Market ideology says paralyzed man is total waste to the community. But kingdom ideology says he is valuable. The faith of the four people articulated with love in action.
We are called to share our faith and resources with everyone we meet each day, whether it is gardener waiter, clerk or a family member. In this lent season we should share our faith by bringing the living water to the least of our brothers and sisters.
Comfort of the paralysed man- Deliverance from sin and Sickness
Jesus forgave his sins and removed his discomfort with just a command. Providing this man health was like providing him Heaven. Jesus is the great physician. He knows the cause and he can treat the effects. The paralysed man was above all comforted by the very thought that He is valuable in the sight of Jesus and his friends.
Yes, God accepts us just as we are. For Him the life of paralysed man was valuable, the faith of the four friends was valuable. So also God wants us to bring comfort to the people we meet by letting them know their worth and value.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, giver of all good things, fill our hearts with love for you and others. And lead us to love and serve you with whole heart, Amen.
Rev. Rajan Koshy, MTC, Edmonton.