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Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Devotion: Exchanging Mud Pies for Infinite Joy

“When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralytic, ‘Take heart, son; your sins are forgiven.’” Matthew 9:2

In this story, friends fight through a crowd and tear open a hole in a roof in order to bring a paralyzed man before Jesus. It is interesting that the first words Jesus utters are, “your sins are forgiven.”

I would imagine that the friends would be disappointed, thinking to themselves, “Jesus this is not why we brought our paralyzed friend to you. We want him to walk, we want him to be physically healed.” Jesus did not meet their expectations; rather he exceeded them.

What they witnessed, however, was that Jesus responded with something far beyond what their minds could comprehend or imagine. He not only healed the man physically, but also spoke spiritual healing into his life; surpassing the expectations of everyone.

In The Weight of Glory, C.S. Lewis writes,
“Indeed, if we consider the unblushing promises of reward and the staggering nature of the rewards promised in the Gospels, it would seem that Our Lord finds our desires, not too strong, but too weak.
We are half-hearted creatures, fooling about with drink and sex and ambition when infinite joy is offered us, like an ignorant child who wants to go on making mud pies in a slum because he cannot imagine what is meant by the offer of a holiday at the sea. We are far too easily pleased.”

• In what ways have we been disappointed by God? Where have we seen God exceed our expectations?
• What would it mean if the things we long for are not too much for God to handle, but rather too weak?

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