Summary: We need hearts for God ~ and hands for others. We can all help someone up.
HELP THEM UP!
Sometimes a verse of scripture just enters your heart for you to pray for a particular person or situation. For my wife Julie Mark 1:31 “So he (Jesus) went to her, took her hand and helped her up. The fever left her and she began to wait on them” was a verse she kept on praying for her Mum. She just wanted to tell Jesus her Mum was ill and ask Him to go to her, take her hand and help her up. We all so wanted her illness to leave her so she could begin to do all the things she normally does for the family. And perhaps you may understand that because she is a Mum we wanted her to be able to begin to wait on us all again. Because that is precisely what she would have wanted to do.
Imagine her surprise when she later read such similar words in Acts 3:7 “Taking him by the right hand, he (Peter) helped him up”. Those words had be so ingrained on her heart for several months now, and she would not have realised how significant these words in Acts were but for those months of praying the same words over and over again from Mark. Then it struck her. If the Master, Jesus had put them into practise so had his servant, Peter. And I feel the Lord wants us to put them into practise too.
2. Master ~ Servant
Peter had been on an intensive training course learning from the Master how to do the stuff ~ A favourite Vineyard expression ~ John Wimber as a relatively new Christian asked when do we get to do the stuff he had been reading in the New Testament! (Not a question easily answered then or today by the way).
Peter had seen Jesus heal the sick and perhaps more importantly the way Jesus did it. After all it was Peter’s mother~in~law that had been healed in Mark Chapter 1! You can then read how Peter does it just like saw and heard Jesus did in Acts 3:2 ~ 8. The apostles did the same things the Master did. They even used the same words. Jesus should be our teacher for the way we should be doing it too! But remember it took an outpouring of the Holy Spirit before these disciples were empowered and equipped to preach the gospel with signs and wonders.
3. You Help Them Up!
Shelia Walsh shared a word she once received from the Lord: “If I choose to heal them, I will. If not, I want them to go from your arms to mine, don’t drop them by the wayside”. Sometimes the Lord heals one person and another remains sick. We may not understand why but our job is to help that person up in every way we can, so that they do not feel a failure or discarded.
One day we will live in a place where there is no more pain, no more tears but here it’s a different story. For those who are struggling with pain and illness, whether temporary or permanent lets be the loving strong arms of Jesus to help them up and carry them if necessary. Lets not leave any of His sheep behind, by the wayside, to wander and roam.
4. Do You Need a Hand Up? ~ The Gospel
“What a Friend we have in Jesus” the Hymn says. “All our sins and griefs to bear”! If you have never accepted the hand of friendship that Jesus offers to you I urge you to stop and think today about the most important decision you will ever have to make. If you have Jesus you can know that He will never leave or forsake you, His strong arms will carry you through the darkest and stormy night. He just waits patiently for you to hold out your hand out to His. Anyone who comes to him will be accepted, and be given the real helping hand up they need. “And him that cometh to Me I will in no wise cast out” John 6:37.
5. Kneel and Help Them Up!
If you read Acts 9:36 to 41 you will see Peter is at it again! There he is praying for Tabitha to get up. Even though she is dead! I can’t help but think the whole passage is identical to Jesus taking Jarius’s daughter by the hand and saying “My child, get up”. (See Luke 8:54!). Again we see Peter putting into practise the very things he witnessed Jesus do.
But there is an interesting little addition. It says, “He got down on his knees and prayed”. You know we too have to get down on our knees so to speak and pray for those who desperately need help to get up. There is something about actually getting on our knees physically before a Holy God in prayer and intercession. In our closet is where we can speak to God about that person, their needs and gain an understanding and the faith to know and see what God wants to do. Don’t rule anything out ~ our God just loves to do the impossible!