“Crying out from the pit of my despair
You were writing the pages
Before I had a name
Before I needed grace
Singing songs of redemption
Every time I ran away
You were louder than my shame
You never gave up on me
You are my testimony”
That song helps us to see what the bottom looks like, and what the hope realized in Jesus looks like when you follow Him up out of the bottom. When that happens, He truly becomes your testimony.
I wanted to show you a passage from the Gospel of Luke that tells of a paralyzed man who had given up hope of being healed. He probably harboured bitterness and anger for his lot in life.
He was immobile and couldn’t get to Jesus. But, some men in this man’s life and the paralytic had enough “what have we got to lose” faith that if they could get him to Jesus, he could be healed. Read the Luke 5:17-26 passage:
17 On one of those days while he was teaching, Pharisees and teachers of the law were sitting there who had come from every village of Galilee and Judea, and also from Jerusalem. And the Lord’s power to heal was in him. 18 Just then some men came, carrying on a stretcher a man who was paralyzed. They tried to bring him in and set him down before him. 19 Since they could not find a way to bring him in because of the crowd, they went up on the roof and lowered him on the stretcher through the roof tiles into the middle of the crowd before Jesus. 20 Seeing their faith he said, “Friend, your sins are forgiven.” 21 Then the scribes and the Pharisees began to think to themselves, “Who is this man who speaks blasphemies? Who can forgive sins but God alone?” 22 But perceiving their thoughts, Jesus replied to them, “Why are you thinking this in your hearts? 23 Which is easier: to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, ‘Get up and walk’? 24 But so that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins”—he told the paralyzed man, “I tell you: Get up, take your stretcher, and go home.” 25 Immediately he got up before them, picked up what he had been lying on, and went home glorifying God. 26 Then everyone was astounded, and they were giving glory to God. And they were filled with awe and said, “We have seen incredible things today.”
So, those men took the paralytic to Jesus. Now, I don’t know if you’ve ever carried anyone, but it is a big task even if there are four of you. Remember, this guy was dead weight. So, these men got the paralytic in the vicinity of Jesus, but couldn’t get close enough for him to see Jesus. None of these men was willing to give up now. So, these guys rip open the flat roof on the home and lower the paralytic down into the presence of Jesus. The rest is history. Jesus saw the faith of the men who lowered the man, then Jesus forgave the paralytic of his sins and healed him.
When we follow Jesus through the door to recovery, we come with all our baggage, hurt, bitterness, anger, pain, hopelessness and sinfulness. It is at that moment when we cry out to Jesus that we need to confess our sins so we can begin our new life without all the baggage. At that moment when we confess our sin to Jesus, there is an immediate spiritual detox that takes place and our healing from the months and years of living in the bottom is realized. At that point, we can get up and walk as a new person in-Christ. This is when our “one-day-at-a-time” life begins. It is the new beginning we’ve wanted for so long. Now it is up to us. The responsibility is ours if we want to move forward.
Take that first step with Jesus. Let us at LC-CRS walk alongside you, like the men with the paralytic. We will encourage you on your new journey of recovery as you press into your personal relationship with Jesus for your strength, hope and direction. His Word and LC-CRS resources will give you the stability and direction you will need for your new beginning, your recovery.