cripple

Pick Up Your Bed

"I say to you, arise, take up your bed, and go to your house." --Mark 2:11

Read: Mark 2

It took four men to get him near Jesus. Four men who wouldn't stop until they made a breakthrough, literally. The bible says that "when they had broken through, they let down the bed on which the paralytic was lying." Reading this story a few weeks ago, some things dawned on me. First, the breakthrough -- the realization that there was no other option; no Plan B. Jesus was in the healing business and their friend was buying.

Then, before Jesus does for the paralytic what the man thought he needed most, Jesus says, "Your sins are forgiven you." (Wait, what? His sins? Why not first heal his legs?, I wondered.) Then Jesus answered my question when He asked the scribes, "Which is easier, to say to the paralytic, 'Your sins are forgiven you,' or to say, 'Arise, take up your bed and walk?'"

In case there was any doubt of His ability to forgive sins, Jesus went ahead and said to the paralytic, "I say to you, arise, take up your bed, and go to your house." A paralyzed man carrying his prison back home is enough to quiet the doubters. And here's my last thought...he carried his bed home. Jesus put him to work. He didn't say, "Tell others what I did for you," or "Show off your legs." No, carrying his bed said it all.

You'll forgive the long entry, but all I want to do is carry my bed. Our blessing of health is an opportunity to go to work; for family, friends, those less fortunate, our health is a means of praise. Someone you know needs a breakthrough. I did. And I'm betting the healed man in our story lifted other people's burdens from that day forward, wouldn't you agree? If you do, pick up your bed. Let's go to work.

--Jimmy Peña

For Discussion: Who are you in today's story? Are you in need of a breakthrough? Dealing with an illness, infirmity or other struggle? Perhaps you're a friend, helping someone through the roof by praying for them, listening to them? Maybe you feel like you're one of the crowd, the onlookers, not really engaged either way, be it with your health or the health of someone else. Well, we know who we are NOT in this story, so let's go. Who needs prayer? Let's lift someone through the roof. Let's place someone you know and love as close the healer as we know how to. As always, simply say "Unspoken" and the team and readers will pray for you.

WEIGHT LOSS X FACTOR: SLEEP

How did you sleep last night? While people desperate to lose a few pounds and inches like to focus on fitness and nutrition, there are a number of factors that can work for you -- or against you. One that is typically underrated is good, old fashioned shut-eye. Find out what the research says about how all those late nights can be moving the scale in the wrong direction.

>> Click here for the study from CNN Health.

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BRING PRAYFIT TO YOUR TOWN

Sometimes, it's just a family that needs recalibrating in the areas of faith and fitness. But sometimes, it's your church family that could use a little tune-up. Congregations across the country have welcomed Jimmy and his message of health as a means of praise, using it as a way to kick off a revival of sorts...and your town could be next. Contact us at info@prayfit.com to schedule a visit from the PrayFit team! As always, for churches and other non-profit events there is never a speaking fee. Talk to your pastors and leaders. Reach out to us and let's see health as a means of praise, together.

But He Did...

"The people were amazed when they saw the mute speaking, the crippled made well, the lame walking and the blind seeing. And they praised the God of Israel." --Matthew 15:31

Read: Matthew 15

What a week. If you missed any of the entries of healing and faith, please take a few minutes to scroll the archives. But as we turn the page on our topic, an entry from February that I wrote in the midst of my storm came to mind today. It was called, "But Even If He Doesn't." Do you remember it? Here's an excerpt.

"At the edge of a fiery furnace, Shadrach, Meshack and Abednego had a decision. Bow to an idol or be thrown in a furnace. They chose faith, believing that God would deliver them from the very fire that tested it. But then they said, 'But even if He doesn't...' That part of the verse has taken up residence inside my heart this week. They didn't jump knowing they'd be delivered. They jumped knowing the Deliverer. I'm shaking my head as I type this sentence. I want an 'Even if He doesn't' kind of faith. Save me, help me, heal me. But even if He doesn't..."

Folks, we all struggle. But I'm fixing my hopes on the promise of eternal life to make sense of the struggles in this one. These bodies -- as frail as they are at times -- are God-woven miracles; temporary on purpose and built "for" a purpose. And I promise you, when mine catches back up with my spirit, look out. After all, back in February I said "But even if He doesn't..."

Hmm...but He did.

--Jimmy Peña

STAT OF THE DAY: If you watched the presidential debates this week, or even if you didn't, you likely realize that health care and the economy are critical issues in this election. But lost in the political posturing of the high cost of health care are the root causes of the spiraling costs. According to a recent report by MSNBC, obesity costs the U.S. $190 billion per year in health care and lost work productivity. Will that come up in the debates? Should it?

PRAYFIT TV Check out and share this inspiring video about the transformative power physical stewardship

Jimmy Peña's message of "Life is not about the body, but health is a means of praise" is being well-received by congregations around the country. His story-telling approach to how a healthy body can strengthen the body of Christ and inspire abundant living is a message you don't want to miss.

>> For ministry assistance or to get Jimmy out to your church, write us at info@prayfit.com.