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Listen Now. We will now be together with the every day studying of Epistle and Gospel with The Prayer Team.

Second Sunday of Lent—St. Gregory Palamas

 And when Jesus returned to Capernaum after some days, it was reported that He was at house. And many have been gathered collectively, in order that there was not room for them, not even in regards to the door; and He was preaching the phrase to them. And they got here, bringing to Him a paralytic carried by 4 males. And once they couldn’t get close to him as a result of of the group, they eliminated the roof above Him; and once they had made a gap, they let down the pallet on which the paralytic lay. And when Jesus noticed their religion, He stated to the paralytic, “My son, your sins are forgiven.” Now some of the scribes have been sitting there, questioning in their hearts, “Why does this man speak thus? It is blasphemy! Who can forgive sins but God alone?” And instantly Jesus, perceiving in His spirit that they thus questioned inside themselves, stated to them, “Why do you question thus in your hearts? Which is easier, to say to the paralytic, ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, ‘Rise, take up your pallet and walk’? But that you may know that the Son of man has authority on earth to forgive sins”—He stated to the paralytic— “I say to you, rise, take up your pallet and go home.” And he rose, and instantly took up the pallet and went out earlier than all of them; in order that they have been all amazed and glorified God, saying, “We never saw anything like this!”  Mark 2:1-12 (Gospel of the Second Sunday of Lent)

 

Good morning Prayer Team!

There are two vital classes that come from in the present day’s Gospel studying.  The first entails friendship.  A person who was paralyzed wished to get to Christ in order that he might be healed.  He had no approach of attending to Christ on his personal.  So, his 4 buddies carried him to Christ.  And not solely did they carry him.  When they bought to the home the place Jesus was, there was no room to get into the home, they couldn’t even get to the door.  So they went and minimize a gap in the roof of the home and let the person down by the roof.  It’s onerous to think about what that appeared like.  Imagine should you wished to get somebody on the roof of your own home.  There are 4 individuals to do it, and one man mendacity on a mattress who must get on the roof.  You’d must carry his weight and the burden of the mattress, hoist all of this at the least ten toes in the air, and do all of it with out your paralyzed good friend falling and getting much more harm.  There may need been some ridicule in the group as nicely.  The passage doesn’t say that a lot of individuals helped these males.  Actually it doesn’t say something about them getting assist.  The crowd may have helped by simply opening the door and making room.  The lesson right here is that in getting others to Christ, it won’t agree with the “crowd” of the day.  Thankfully, 4 buddies have been undeterred in their efforts to get their good friend to Christ. 

Which brings us to the second and extra highly effective lesson of the story.  After all of this effort, reducing a gap in the roof, and fastidiously decreasing their good friend to Christ (think about that ingenuity and how onerous it should have been to decrease a mattress with ropes and have it not fold up or have the person fall off), Christ stated to the person “My son, your sins are forgiven.”(Mark 2:5)  Can you think about the response of the buddies?  Like, “Hey, Jesus, why do you think we all just went through all that trouble, the lifting on the roof, the cutting of the hole, the lowering of our friend, just to see you?  We came so he could walk.  We didn’t come for forgiveness!”  Or what the paralyzed man thought “Hey, Jesus, my problem isn’t my sins, my problem is that I’m paralyzed.”  Imagine how upset these individuals should have been that Jesus didn’t do what they wished.  It was apparent to THEM what wanted to be finished.

However, Jesus doesn’t all the time do precisely what we would like, however what HE thinks we’d like.  The man’s largest downside, which is ours as nicely, is that we’re “paralyzed” by sin.  The final therapeutic all of us want is therapeutic of our spirits, therapeutic of hearts shattered by sins.  There are different wounds all of us carry as nicely—for some it is perhaps paralysis of physique, or different one other illness.  For some it is perhaps one thing in our minds that doesn’t work proper.  It is perhaps emotional scarring or a materials want—like a want for a new job.  It is perhaps one thing long run, like a want for restored well being, or it is perhaps one thing extra speedy like success on a check in college.  But the best want all of us have is for non secular therapeutic that solely the Lord can provide.  And so Jesus gave the person non secular therapeutic. And then He healed his paralysis. 

Christ shouldn’t be a merchandising machine the place we put in our requests and He solutions them.  The aim of prayer isn’t to try this.  The aim of prayer is to easily be with Christ.  He is aware of our wants, even earlier than we ask Him.  The aim of prayer is to share an intimacy with Christ.  It is actually applicable to put out our wants and our struggles earlier than God, the identical approach we inform our buddies about our struggles.  It is vital, nonetheless, to keep in mind that issues usually are not all the time answered in the best way we would like them answered. 

If my son asks me every single day, “Can I have French fries?” I’m not going to say sure to that each time.  Sometimes the reply goes to be “You are going to get broccoli.”  And then my son would possibly say “Don’t you love me Daddy, why can’t I have French fries every day?”  And my reply to that will be “Of course I love you, and I know you love French fries, but if I let you eat them every day, you won’t be healthy and I wouldn’t be a responsible father if I put your health in jeopardy.  I want you to have a happy, healthy and long life, so the answer to your request today is broccoli rather than French fries, because what YOU really want is a long and healthy life, not just the good taste of food that isn’t good for you.”  God is our Father, and generally the Father is aware of higher than the kids.  Sometimes God solutions prayer in the best way that He feels is most helpful for us, even when it’s not what we predict is greatest.  And generally, as in the case of the Paralytic, He solutions each the request we’re making in addition to the one we do not make. 

When I don’t let my son have all the pieces he asks for, it doesn’t imply I don’t love him.  In truth, I really like him a lot that I received’t give him no matter he desires, however what I feel is greatest.  And generally these are the identical factor.  God loves us a lot that He will reply our prayers and give us what He thinks is greatest.  And generally these are the identical factor as nicely. 

With one accord, we sing your praises, Father Gregory who speaks from God, sonorous trumpet of theology, and divine and sacred organ of holy knowledge.  But as mind that stands earlier than the Intellect, unto Him direct our mind, so unto you we could cry aloud: Rejoice, O herald of grace. (Kontakion, Sunday of St. Gregory Palamas, Trans. by Fr. Seraphim Dedes)

Ask God every single day for His will to be finished in your life.  And then belief Him to steer your steps, to what’s greatest for you.

 

+Fr. Stavros

         

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With Roger Hunt offering in the present day’s Daily Reading: Listen Now.

These readings are underneath copyright and is utilized by permission. All rights reserved. These works is probably not additional reproduced, in print or on different web sites or in another type, with out the prior written authorization of the copyright holder: Reading © Holy Transfiguration Monastery – Brookline, MA, Apolytikion of Abbot Marcellus © Narthex Press, Kontakion of Abbot Marcellus © Holy Transfiguration Monastery – Brookline, MA.

The Revised Standard Version of the Bible is copyrighted 1946, 1952, 1971, and 1973 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the usA. and utilized by permission. From the Online Chapel of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America.

Photo Credit: Ancient Answers

 

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