Faith on Friday: I’ve Got a Guy…

Icon of the healing of the paralytic at the pool of Bethesda

Icon of the healing of the paralytic at the pool of Bethesda

This past Sunday our pastor preached on the Gospel reading about the paralytic who sat by the healing pool at Bethesda hoping that when the angel stirred the water, someone would help lift him down into it so he could be healed. But as he says in the Scripture, “I have no one.”

Father John used this story to remind us how important community is in our healing. He often injects humor into his homilies, and this time he brought up the old saying in gangster movies, “I’ve got a guy….”

Last July when I was in a near fatal car wreck and had to spend several months in a hospital bed at home, I experienced that community in action. Sunday’s sermon reminded me that I do, indeed, have a guy—quite a few, actually—whom I can call on for help. In fact, I didn’t even have to call some of them. They just showed up to help me. And kept showing up for weeks and months with food and their time to sit with me, and run errands for me, and help me with physical therapy and bathing and wound care. Whatever was needed. I’m not sure how I could have gotten through that time without these folks.

Last night I went to a cookout/shower for a couple at our church who is expecting a baby in the next few weeks. As several dozen folks showed up with bags and boxes of gifts for the new baby, and others grilled burgers and brought side dishes and drinks, I thought again about our community and how crucial it is to our lives.

 helping-othersWhether or not you’re religious or a member of a church, you’ve got to agree that community is important to the well-being of families and individuals. Sometimes that community can be found in neighborhoods, or workplaces, or amongst families whose children are school-mates. Maybe it exists within social structures like book clubs and garden clubs, athletic teams, or even larger organizations like country clubs. I don’t know about those. But today I’m thankful for the community at St. John Orthodox Church. We aren’t perfect, but we try to take care of each other. And I saw that care in a whole new light after being on the receiving end of it so much last year. Thank you, my brothers and sisters. I love you.

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