Ever heard those words? Pick up your clothes, pick up your shoes, pick up your laundry, pick up dinner…Jesus was all about picking stuff up. Yep.
Crowds were starting to gather and one day Jesus was in a setting we find him often, a home. The crowds are so massive, so packed in that when a paralyzed man was being carried in to see Jesus the crowds wouldn’t budge. They couldn’t have or why would they have climbed to the top of the home to dig their way through the roof, then lower their friend down into the room to see THE Healer of mankind. Seeing their faith Jesus is moved to forgive sins……uh apply brakes please…..uh sir….uh Jesus, rabbi, teacher, master, Lord uh my/our buddy here is paralyzed and we would like it if you would stay focused here and help him walk. Thanks for the forgiveness and all but we didn’t even ask for it…meanwhile in the background the religious leaders of the day, the teachers of the law were starting to steam. Forgiveness, that was their area of control, they were the ones who were the keepers and administrators of forgiveness, not this Nazarene. Yet Jesus knowing what he knows points them out and calls em out….hahaha Yea He let’s em have it….He reminds them along with others within earshot that He is the Son of Man (God) and to prove it i’ll tell this man to pick up his mat and walk….and your sins are still forgiven…
The crowd that wouldn’t budge earlier i bet split like the red sea when they saw the man stand up, pick up his mat and walk
I bet the crowd were murmuring as he walked by with his buddies “what did he say?” what did he say?” and the replies come flowing through…He told me to pick up my mat and walk..so i am…and OH and that our sins are forgiven. say what?!
Isn’t that amazingly cool?! yes… and to see not too much further in His (Jesus’) journey where he is telling folks to pick up their cross and follow him. Here we go picking stuff up again. But this time when we pick up our cross it’s to put to death another type of paralysis. the paralysis of stinking thinking….So the cross in this context is one of death. That’s what the cross represented and Jesus is telling us to pick up our death instrument and follow HIM… in essence what Jesus is saying is pick up your shame,pick up your guilt, the pity, the addiction, the embarrassment,the neglect, the self rejection, pick up whatever it is that doesn’t reflect the glory of ME in YOU and let’s put the areas in our lives that are causing the paralysis to death, get up and walk.
its a rugged joy we experience when walking with others and our savior, thankful to beLIeVE life with many who aren’t afraid of picking up their “stuff” putting it to death and walk..