Catch My Dis-Ease
“Now a man who was lame from birth was being carried to the temple gate where he was put every day to beg. When he saw Peter and John about to enter, he asked them for money. Then Peter said, ‘Silver or gold I do not have, but what I do have I give you. In the name of Jesus Christ, walk.’ Taking him by the right hand, he helped him up, and instantly the man’s feet and ankles became strong. He jumped to his feet and began to walk. When all the people saw him they were filled with wonder at what had happened.
The priests and the captain of the temple guard were greatly disturbed. They seized Peter and John and put them in jail.
They began to question them: ‘By what power or what name did you do this?’
Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, said to them: ‘Rulers and elders of the people! If we are being called to account today for an act of kindness shown to a man who was lame and are being asked how he was healed, then know this, it is by the name of Jesus Christ that this man stands before you healed.’ – Acts 3 & 4
Healing isn’t easy. Sure, in this story all the man “lame from birth” had to do was stand up. But that’s not the only healing that’s needed in this story. There are larger dysfunctions at play in the story. First, there is the community that carried the beggar to the gate. They had developed a system of placing him in a location where he was more likely to call upon travelers and immigrants for help. Essentially, they had decided to make him someone else’s problem rather than take care of him themselves.
Second, the temple authorities were so ensnared to the status quo arrangement with the Romans that they reacted to Peter with fear rather than faith. Rather than celebrate God’s healing they sought to squash anything that might rock the boat.
The healing of the man born lame exposed the sickness plaguing the wider community. It is not uncommon for efforts towards health to be met with suspicion and hostility by an unhealthy culture. Getting healthy isn’t easy.
If you are working on getting healthy (mentally, spiritually, physically, emotionally) in your life, I pray that God may give you strength to overcome all barriers. If you are moving towards wholeness, healing a broken heart, may God give you peace. If you are striving toward creating healthy relationships with appropriate boundaries and respect, may God guide you.
The work of healing isn’t easy but it is holy work. God is with you.
Holy One, your grace is sufficient for me. Loving God, your grace is sufficient for me. You are my rock and my refuge and your grace is sufficient for me. Amen.