Sick of Religion? Week 2: Devotional Day 4
DAY 4 – Thursday
Mark 2:1-12, James 2:14-17, Luke 8:40-56, Mark 10:52
How does Jesus respond to faith in action?
What about the behavior of the people in this story helps us understand their motivations and desires?
My daughter failed her first driving test. Not an “I missed too many points” kind of fail, but an “I broke a traffic law” automatic fail. She drove on the wrong side of the road. After we talked about the seriousness of her mistake we had a good chuckle because all was well and no one was hurt. The truth is, her dad and I are thankful for the life lesson she learned. You see, we can know in our head all the rules and believe them to be true and necessary, but if we don’t act consistently on those beliefs then what good are they? My intelligent, conscientious daughter knows traffic laws, but in that one moment she failed to act consistently on what she believed was true.
We’re all guilty of this at various points in our lives; when our actions aren’t consistent with our beliefs. We believe the Holy Spirit is alive in us, yet we choose habits that are destructive and limiting. We believe God is our provider and sustainer, yet we give of our resources like they’re in limited supply.
Jesus saw the opposite behavior in Capernaum that day. He saw a thread of consistency between the faith and actions of four men and their paralyzed friend, and he called it out in front of a standing room only crowd. “And when Jesus saw their faith, he said…” (v. 5). We see similar faith to action scenarios played out throughout the gospels like in Luke 8. Zero in on verses 48 and 50 specifically and see outstretched arms of faith grabbing hold of the power of Christ. Responding like only God can, Jesus offers gracious healing to these hearts of active faith.