Staggering under the weight of my mat, I’ve been missing a lot of miracles lately. John 5 tells the story of Jesus healing a lame man on the Sabbath. Jesus asks him if he wants to get well, the man response with an excuse, and yet Jesus still heals him. He commands him to take up his mat and walk. The Jews get upset that the man is working on the Sabbath by carrying his mat and completely miss the miracle that the lame man is walking.
“the Jews said to the man who had been healed, ‘It is the Sabbath; the law forbids you to carry your mat.’”
Did they even notice he was WALKING?! The man who had lain by the pool lame for years?
While studying this chapter a friend asked “Katie what is your mat?” Ouch. My mat. What is God freeing me from laying lame and suck on? Pride, doubt and control instantly come to mind. Control, the sin that lames me with more frequency than others, the desire to do things my way on my timetable rather than His.
I’m no better than the Jews of old. I stagger around under the weight of my mat completely missing the miracle that I’m walking!Surrendered control is heavy to walk under some days, the days I forget I’m even walking. I tend to only feel the weight of the mat, the work on my Sabbath trust. It is restful to give up control, but ittakes work to stay surrendered. I feel that weight. I feel the weight of clinging to His promises when it doesn’t make sense and forget the miracle that He promises us things in the first place!
Are you walking today? Or just feeling the weight and forgetting the miracle that you are even walking? My friend Natasha shares a story of seeing her small miraclesand she brings to light the fact that miracles are often found in irony. Perspective sometimes.Look again at John 5. I think Jesus healed the man not only because he loved him, but so that He could get the glory. He healed the man despite his excuses and on the Sabbath. Jesus knew the Sabbath laws and the reaction it would invoke. Yet He still healed! Maybe because it would make His glory and freedom even more known as the man carried his mat on the Sabbath.
God doesn’t get the glory when we lay on our mats. He gets the glory when we walk with them. Some days I get the mat part – but I completely miss the perspective and proceeding joy of remembering that I am WALKING! The mat isn’t so heavy then, in fact it feels a bit more like a bouquet of promises, er flowers from the Lover who is in control. 🙂