The standstill.

Todays Scripture: Mark 2: 1 – 12

In tonight’s pre – sanctified gifts service we read about the paralytic that gets healed by Christ. This has been the Wednesday of the paralytic in the church year for many years. It precedes the Lazarus Vesper on Saturday and Palm Sunday for a particular reason. It summarizes our actual state and predicament if we refuse divine intervention. It also displays what will happen if we do. Because you see, we are all paralyzed. We can be paralyzed by fear, by greed, by physical injuries, by oppression, by money or by pride. We are paralyzed by the thing we give most attention to. Usually we are paralyzed by our ego because we do believe ourselves to be the most important person on earth. The modernistic creed shouts out “Believe in yourself!” As long as we do, we remain unable to walk. We remain paralyzed. We lay there in our beds and we wither away as time pass by.  Yes, you are important but not the most important. Yes, you are beautiful but not on your own. Beauty is only revealed when the light shines upon it and displays the colors.

The paralytic teaches us that lent in itself is not the solution to our “problem”. Many people remain paralyzed because movement hurts. They remain in a permanent state of lent because it feels familiar and “safe”. They accustomed themselves to feel pretty comfortable with “my time”, “my life” “my opinion about the world” and  “believe what you want as long as you don’t bother me” . People of secular society has learnt to cope with their affliction to the point of that they do not see it as affliction anymore. Secularism is the very definition on what it is to be paralyzed. But lent by itself is not the solution. Yes, we must go trough times of trouble, times of feeling paralyzed. Times of lent and suffering. Sometimes we even need good friends to carry us through those times just like the paralytic, but lent is not the destination. Christ is. His resurrection is what shines light people so that they become beautiful. It is His rising from the dead that gives new life, movement.

Death is the standstill. Death is when no energy is exchanged. Death is the withdrawal of the spirit (air…) from the body. Death is the ultimate paralytic state. Death is secularism… But Christ shows today that He has the power to forgive your sins, to make you walk and to make you beautiful. The paralytic is living evidence of this. Life is movement. Life is the journey. Life is walking higher and deeper.

I wonder how many that confess the secular creed (I believe in me) that has friends that will carry them to the hospital and visit them there? I mean, in a secular paralytic worldview does friends really matter?

In Christ,

Fr. Jakob


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