The two lived on the same block as kids. Both had strict, loving parents. Daily chores included loading hay, carrying feed and helping in the fields. Their young backs were growing strong because of it. After school and homework, they'd meet up in the streets to play childhood games till dark. They were tight-knit. Best pals.
As it turned out, the two had a mutual friend that lived down the street. Their same age, he couldn't walk; paralyzed from birth. But that didn't stop him from telling a good joke or razzing the game's underdog. He was part of the crew. One of the boys.
As years passed, they grew into strong and able men with families of their own. Except, of course, for the one who was crippled. His two buddies checked on him daily though. He had a place at their table on holidays. He was the full-time ref in neighborhood competitions. They worshiped together each weekend. Indeed, after all the years, still tight.
Well, when news arrived that He was in town, the two ran toward each other's homes. In fact, they met in the middle and took turns catching their breath as they talked about their plan. Strong boys became strong men, and carrying their friend all the way across town to the One they say was able to work miracles made all those childhood chores worth it. And in fact, those chores made it possible.
The crowd around the house made it tough to get inside through traditional means. Holding the ends of the bed, the two looked at each other as if sharing the same memory; hauling hay, hoisting feed, playing games and growing up. Only one thing left for friends to do. Lift.
Most of us are familiar with the actual Biblical account of the friends who lifted their friend through the roof to be healed, but isn't it neat to wonder what got them there? What we do know is that Jesus was pleased with the faith of those guys. And they exercised that faith with their backs. You know, I like to imagine the three of them walking home together don't you? Who knows, maybe they played a street game for old times sake. Someone had some catching up to do.
For Discussion: You never know who your health is for...