When Jesus asked the crippled man lying near the pool of healing waters, “Do you want to be well?” I thought, What kind of question is that? Of course he does, I answered. That’s why he was there day after day, for years, thirty-eight of them. Other people crowded ahead of him every time and he didn’t have a chance. Surely Jesus could not find fault in that.
But then I looked closer at this handicapped man. I saw him shrug his shoulders when people pushed him aside. He crawled back to his familiar spot to wait for the next time when an angel would stir the waters, but he knew it would be no different than all the times before. He had accepted his fate. He had become comfortable in his pitiful condition.
After all, what could he have done?
He could have shouted, “Wait! It’s my turn!” Or perhaps he could have asked someone to help him reach the waters in time.
Jesus knew the man’s heart and his very thoughts. Did he want to be healed? Or was it easier to stay in the same condition? He had no responsibilities.
He had the perfect excuse—he blamed others.
I can relate to him because I have done the same thing. When I have been wounded by someone’s words, and those arrows have pierced deep into my heart, I don’t plead for the Lord to remove them. I don’t beg Him to bind up my wounds so that I can sing and laugh and praise His name.
No, I would rather moan and groan and say, “Woe is me. Do you see what this person has done to me? He has damaged me beyond repair. The ache and unfairness of it all will always be there. I’ll just sit here and do nothing because there is no hope. I can never forgive him.”
Folks, this is the devil speaking, not the Lord. Do I want to be healed? I have no power to do it on my own. How then? Only by releasing all of my brokenness to the Lord. Every stinking bit. No half-way business will do.
If I can give all my fears, failures, and wounds to him, He will heal me. A simple solution, but it is not easy. I would rather keep my damaged self, blame the one who hurt me, and use it as an excuse for not living in the Lord’s Light. How much sense does that make?
It doesn’t. I want to be well. Thank you, Jesus, for your healing touch.
Give the broken pieces of your heart to the Lord. He can create a glorious mosaic.
Read the story of Jesus and the lame man in John 5:1-18.
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