Priority Prayers

There are certain themes that dominate prayer request lists. The material and the physical are usually at the top. Funny how we pray more for the temporal than the spiritual.

The four men who defied all the odds to get their paralyzed friend to Jesus' feet appeared to be hoping for physical healing. I wonder what they thought: "When Jesus saw their faith, he said, 'Friend, your sins are forgiven.'" —Luke 5:20.

Excuse us, Lord, but in case you haven't noticed, this guy can't walk!

What did the Lord see in this "faith"? Did He say what He did simply to provoke the Pharisees, who had front row seats despite their unbelief? Perhaps both are true. In any case, He used His critics' shock at His presumption to teach at least two valuable lessons.

1. He had the authority to forgive sins because He was God—an authority He proved by healing the paralyzed man.

2. He also demonstrated that spiritual healing was His first priority. Jesus never "imposed" forgiveness where it wasn't asked for. I believe He saw saving faith in the paralytic.

And given that truth, I have a sneaking suspicion that the sick man would have gone home happy even if the Lord had chosen not to touch his body as He touched the man's soul.

As I pray for so many people who are physically ill, may I give at least equal time to pray for those who are spiritually ill.


  1. Such a good reminder! And I'm sure you're right about the paralytic. A great thing to remember as I head to prayer meeting in a few hours.

  2. Yes, we really do spend a lot of time praying about the temporal things--what a reminder, Lynda. Thank you!


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