Jesus Heals a Paralytic – Mark 2:1-12

A week ago at this pre-confirmation meeting I went to we read this story. The idea was to try to imagine what it was really like rather than just reading words.

As I was imagining I realised that there was something I never noticed before…

“When Jesus saw their faith”

To put it in context it says “so many gathered that there was no room left, not even outside the door”. Now I don’t just imagine that was a crowd like you’d get up Hanley when the lights are being turned on, I imagine that as almost a mob. People crammed so tight you could barely move and shoving forwards to get a glimpse of Jesus or to be close enough to hear him.

Then these blokes came along carrying a paralytic! No way is anyone letting them through! A bloke on a mat and the others carrying him would take up too much space… After all – ‘I was here first!’ normally kicks in at the queue in the supermarket, let alone the crowd to see or hear something that could change your life!

However, these guys didn’t see the crowd and say “sorry bud, we’ll have to come back another time”. They went around, climbed the house and started digging through the roof!! They must’ve been hot and tired as that would’ve been hard work and they would have had to dig a hole big enough to lower the mat down. They were vandalising a house in the end lol!

After they’d dug the hole, they pulled the man on the mat up and lowered him into the house.

“When Jesus saw their faith”

These men believed so much that Jesus could do something to help the man that they did all this. I don’t think it’s the paralytics’ faith that He’s speaking about. It’s the men that kept going despite it not being easy.

For me that is reason to keep praying for the people that are hurting, in a bad place and need Gods hand. Everyone can read a prayer request and pray once and then forget – I’ve done it many times! To keep on praying with the same fervent prayer tomorrow as you prayed today – now THAT is the challenge. It is even harder when the person/issue is close to you, even consuming you.

To hold the same faith and belief that God is hearing your prayers and working in those people is so hard when you keep praying and nothing appears to be happening; it can be draining. I am convinced that although you may not see any change in the situation, God is at work there but it is still challenging to hold faith.

I have despaired in prayer before now, I have begged, pleaded, shouted, cursed, and sobbed my heart out. As this poem demonstrates more than I can – God is always there and doesn’t just act like that parent that ignores your temper tantrums until you shut up and talk to Him properly.



I screamed and shouted
What in the name of sanity
is going on?”

God sat.
Impassive, listening,
And let me continue

I beat my fists on His chest
And threw myself to the floor
Thrashing and kicking

God sat.
Unflinching, watching
And let me continue

I hurled abuse and blame,
Daring Him to respond
So I could smash His argument

God sat.
Patiently, silent,
And let me continue

Finally, when I had spent my
Anger and frustration,
I cried.

Only then did He move.
Taking me gently in His arms,
God sat, crying with me.

Alan Barrett 10th July 1996

The men who brought the paralytic to Jesus would have been tired and hot. I think they would’ve been having doubts… “I wonder if Jesus can/will heal him…? What if Jesus turns him away? What if he’s annoyed that we dug a hole in his roof?! What happens if Jesus can’t/won’t heal him?” and yet “Jesus saw their faith”.

They carried on digging and kept pressing forward even when full of doubt… I think that’s incredible that God saw their faith through their doubt… That gives me so much hope.

I think that is having faith… To keep praying even when you’re drained and you wonder if you’re prayers are even being heard… That is when the real trust and real faith comes into it. We aren’t robots and I don’t think there should be any shame in being completely human before God because even when we’re full of doubt, anger, hate, despair and frustration, God is right there walking through it with us and holding our hands.

“For I am the Lord, your God, who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear; I will help you.”

– Isaiah 41:13



  1. GHF Said:

    I am uplifted by this post.

    There is always a reason to complain – and we’re all guilty – and I suppose having my roof smashed in would irritate me a tad!

    However, if I saw a miracle as the man was commanded to “take up thy bed and walk”, I think I’d have overlooked the structural vandalism wrought upon my abode by men of genuine faith.

  2. […] I needed a bit of inspiration and went “shopping around” on blogs and found these: Emeth – Jesus Heals a Paralytic and Mission Minded – Travailing in Prayer.  Very inspirational and a great reminder of what it […]

  3. Anonymous Said:

    i read this hoping to find an explanation on “your sins are forgiven/get up, take your mat ….” . but in reading this i learned something else, something very inspirational and helpful. thanks

  4. Emeth Said:

    Thankyou for your comment, it is very encouraging

    God bless you.


    Emeth x

  5. MIKE Said:

    Am blessed to learn of what Jesus can do…He more concerned with the state of our souls. He is touched by our infirmities. He responds to faith. Oh that I may prefer and seek the welfare of colleaques.

    Be blessed guys!! you are doing a great work!!!

  6. Jobina Said:

    Pls pray for me and I am full of sinful life

    Thank you.

  7. Ezira Said:

    I am happy I found your site on myspace. Thanks for the sensible critique. Me and my brother were just preparing to do some research about this. I am happy to see such trusted information being shared for free out there.
    Best wishes,
    Fitzhugh from Rockford city

  8. Am so bless to read this teaching.i am studying Mark 2 and come accross to this,giving me an idea that really encouraging to the opic i have in mind,thanks and God bless you more!

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