The fourth dimension
Monday, December 5, 2011
While Jesus taught, Pharisees and teachers of the law were sitting there … some men brought on a stretcher a paralyzed man, and not finding a way to bring him in because of the crowd, they went up on the roof and lowered him on the stretcher through the tiles into the middle in front of Jesus.
These men saw that Jesus was surrounded by the Pharisees. Thinking it through, they realized that two dimensions were not enough if they were going to get to Jesus. So they climbed up and used the third, and surprised everyone.
We often see the Pharisees as two-dimensional, concerned only with law and behavior, and Jesus saw that too. He surprised everyone again with the third dimension of grace. And then he added a fourth dimension when he stood above the entire swatch of law, behavior and grace and released the sweet presence of not only healing, but forgiveness.
Which came first, the chicken or the egg? Is forgiveness more important than healing? Of course, but in the moment of pain the healing feels so warm and new, a gentle swabbing of my angst, salve on my sores, salvation come to my very own body.
I think of Jesus the God-Man proclaiming the beauty and wonder of physical life on this day in the crowd. In his short physical time with us Jesus mastered quickly the ability to experience his senses without using them to funnel everything into sexuality or self.
This fullest kind of life is what he wanted to share and pass on to the paralytic. Walk, run, jump high and laugh, praising God - revel in your forgiveness. There is so much more where that came from. You are richer than you can imagine; act like it. Walk tall.
With your touch, Jesus, streams burst forth in the desert. When I know your healing, let me also know my forgiveness. And when I know my forgiveness, let me know in every cell of my body that I have been healed.