Through the Roof

The day is stifling hot. How he wants to stay in the shade and be left alone, here in his house. What hope is there for him beyond his own front door?


His hand drops to the dry earth beside his mat. Dust is caked into the wrinkles of his time-worn hands. He rolls the word around his mind like a pesky sharp-edged pebble. Hope. Why must they tempt him in this way?

“A rabbi who can heal?

Is it possible?”

Surely not, only God can heal and he is certain the chasm between God and himself is too great. Is that not obvious from the sight of him? He shudders inwardly.  Does he not wear his sin outwardly, legs and arms lifeless beside him? A paralytic. Worthless, he feels. He cannot come before God any more than he can stand on his own two feet.

He is immobilized.

He is separated.

Yet they carry him through the streets of Capernaum. His brother, a friend and two cousins. The bright sun blinds his eyes and the smell of fish permeates his nostrils, nauseating him. Helpless, he lies with eyes cast skyward.

“Where is my savior?” He dares to wonder. Who will reconcile Him to the God who can heal?

They stop several yards in front of a house, surrounded by a vast crowd of people. A damp sea filled breeze grazes his face. Eyes closed tight in prayer, he licks the salt of the sea from his chapped lips.

There are too many here,” he thinks, “too much sickness, too much sin.”

He cannot see through to the front door.

“There is no room for me,” he reasons.  But a nagging hope inside his chest, a small seed of faith will not be ignored. It tugs, turns over in his heart and tugs again. If they cannot reach the door, they will find another way inside. He has come too far. He will not give up.

His friends press forward, through the drove of the waiting, the hoping. And then he is lifted, weightless, above the crowd. Upward, to the top of the house, then down again, through a hole they stop to cut in the roof. Slowly he is lowered, his mat supported by ropes of braided fiber and faith.

And then he is there, at the feet of the Rabbi. This man from Nazareth.

Does the earth shift? Yes, he is certain it does. For everything changes with a profound suddenness. He looks up from his mat and gazes upon the face of the Lamb.

Mercy,” his voice rattles. No other words will come and his heart is engulfed by a holy silence.

Jesus looks upon the man and says: Son, your sins are forgiven. . . “I tell you, get up, take your mat and go home.”

Openly the man weeps. He crawls to his knees and shakily embraces the feet of the Lord. A sob of thanksgiving breaks forth from the pit of his belly and fills the air, a testament to all who stand witness.

Jehovah-Rapha,” he exhales. The God who heals.


The preceding is a piece I wrote to share the story of Mark 2:1-5 after reading it to Wynn in his baby bible on Sunday morning. I love to take what may be only three lines in the bible and really envision the details in my mind to make it seem all the more “real” and relatable to my own walk and circumstances. I hope this story encourages someone today to know that whatever your circumstances and whatever obstacles are keeping you from the front door, dig deep and find the seedling of faith and hold tight-then find whatever way necessary to bring your burden to the feet of the Lamb.
Dig through the roof.

Tunnel your way up.

Crawl down the back alley in the dark.

Whatever it takes.  He is waiting.

Godspeed in that journey,


  1. These words from your heart touched my heart greatly! Thank you for writing out what the Lord has shown you!

  2. I don’t know if you write professionally, but if not I think you should seek an outlet to do so! So beautifully envisioned and written! Thank you for sharing!

  3. You have an amazing gift for writing! I have a difficult time just getting a basic thought across, yet you turn your words into symphonies.

    You must consider a book!

  4. Hi Erin. You write so beautifully. I still remember the first day I read your blog (all about the “red barns”). I don’t even know how I found it, but I have been following ever since. You have the most amazing way with words. God is using you in more ways than you can even see. Keep writing. Keep being the precious person you are. You are a delight and encouragement to so many who read this blog!!!

  5. I love it! You added wonderful color to an already amazing story.

    This post got me thinking, would you ever consider sharing some of the daily things you do to teach Wynn about God? Being a fairly new mom myself, I’m always interested in learning new ideas from other Christian moms who want their children to know that a relationship with God is about more than just a bedtime prayer. And I know you will have some amazing insights.

  6. I have tears at the brims of my eyes…. I have been pondering hope the past few days & it seems you have written this just for me. Thank you.

  7. What beautiful words and beautiful telling of that biblical account. Your blog is so very sweet.
    Blessings, Tiffany

  8. Yes thank you. I to like to have it “come to life” . My pastor covered this a few months back, one of the aspect of what he was remarking on was…think about the friends this guy had. care enough to bring him there, to push their way thru the crowds to at which point many might have said, “well guess its not gonna happen, guess we should have got here sooner” but to have the type of brothers and sisters that will climb a roof, haul you up (alot can be said in that alone)and did a hole thru a roof to get you there.
    Anyhoo, there is alot to be said about being a good friend and at the same time having good friends! God Bless you all!

  9. I hope you don’t mind, I copied this on my blog. I gave your blog address credit. I just found it so moving the way you put it and had to share.

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