My Holy Indifference

I love the story in Mark of the 4 friends who take their paralyzed friend to see Jesus. These guys are the kind of friends we all need, determined and loyal to the end. Scripture tells us the crowd was bonkers (my interpretation) no one could get near Jesus (I imagine Black Friday shoppers all racing for a great steal). Still, these guys wanted to see their friend healed by Christ. They knew if they could just get him close to Jesus….He would take it from there.

I want friends like that.

Better than that, I want to be a friend like that.

If you know the story, you know these friends hoist their buddy up on top of the roof of the house where Jesus is teaching. Have you ever helped someone move? Good friends carry one another’s sofa and grandma’s heavy antique china cabinet — real friends find a way to get you to Jesus!

They tear through the roof and lower their beloved friend down to the Lord. Mark 2:5 says, “Jesus saw THEIR faith, he said to the paralyzed man, ‘Son, your sins are forgiven.'” The man gets up and walks out proving that Jesus has the power to heal & forgive. Meanwhile, the scribes and Pharisees are watching the whole thing and inside their heads are thinking, “Who does he think he is?”. Because Jesus is Jesus, he knows their thoughts and calls them out on it.

This story gets me in a few different ways. One, these friends. Wow. Who doesn’t want friends like that? Can you imagine having someone love you so much that they climb up on top of a roof and rip a hole to let you down to see God? Two, the indifference of the scribes and Pharisees. They were all about finding fault (how often do I do that?), they were looking to point a finger. Instead of being pro-active like the 4 friends, they sat there doing nothing for anyone else.

I’ve been guilty of wrapping up ME in my own little protective cocoon and focusing on all my needs for most of my life. I haven’t climbed any rooftops for any person lost from the love of God. I’ve felt sad for them. I’ve even prayed for them. But, I’ve mostly been indifferent.

Who wants to embarrass someone and talk about Jesus? Not me.

Who wants to seem weird? Not me.

Who wants to point out sin in someone’s life? Not me.

Who wants to seem holier than thou? Not me.

In the meantime, people are hurting, lost and in need of Christ. I don’t want to talk about all the feelings I’ve experienced during this 446 days of unemployment. They’ve been rough. Ugly. More than words can even describe. Still, I’ve felt loved by friends who’ve carried us on our mats to the roof of encouragement. But, I’ve also felt the indifference of those who don’t really care whether or not 446 days without a job go by. It’s life. Not my problem.

Yesterday was a terribly discouraging day. The lowest of lows plagued both hubby and me. Something silly like not being able to find our outdoor Christmas lights pushed us both over the hold-it-together edge. He gritted his teeth and I snapped back to JUST GET ALL THE CHRISTMAS BOXES OUT OF THE LIVING ROOM!!!

We are unraveling at the seams.

Today, I feel better. The process of waiting is a lesson in holy humility. I give it to God. Like the paralyzed man, He cares about my situation.

Lord,
I don’t want to be indifferent when it comes to you or loving others enough to bring them to you. Help me focus on those outside of myself. Knowing you, trusting you and obeying you deserves all my attention and care.
Amen.

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