Lord, I love to tell your story because it has deeply impacted my story. Amen.
READ: MARK 2:8-12 (NIV)
 Immediately Jesus knew in his spirit that this was what they were thinking in their hearts, and he said to them, "Why are you thinking these things?  Which is easier: to say to this paralyzed man, 'Your sins are forgiven,' or to say, 'Get up, take your mat and walk'? [1OJ But I want you to know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins." So he said to the man,  "I tell you, get up, take your mat and go home."  He got up, took his mat and walked out in full view of them all. This amazed everyone and they praised God, saying, "We have never seen anything like this!"
"Get up, take your mat and go home."
There are many things in this story that capture your attention and make it difficult to proceed. For me, Jesus' instruction to the fully healed man is one of them. The first part is as it should be; the man's sins were forgiven and his legs could sustain his weight, allowing him to walk. Something he had not done for some time. It is the command that follows that is captivating and curious. First of all, Jesus tells him to pick up his mat and take it with him. Can you imagine the condition of that mat? We don’t know how long he had laid on it, but it was something he would have preferred to get rid of.
Then Jesus tells him to go home. Why didn't Jesus want this walking miracle to accompany Him? What a testimony he could have given. But Jesus tells him to go home, undoubtedly the most difficult place to be Christ's ambassador. But that is what the Lord told him to do. And he did it. He rose, picked his bed, and went home.
Such it is for all who come to Jesus and are fully healed by Him. Go where they know you best and let your new life "in Christ" impact those who knew you before. That is the way the Kingdom message is spread; the old fashioned way: person to person, one beggar telling other beggars where to find bread.
Lord, thank you for forgiving me and healing my brokenness. Go with me as I carry evidence of my old life and live the new life you gave me. Amen.