Author: Stephanie Marker (Missouri, US)
The man in today’s reading had been sick for 38 years. He had suffered all that time, hoping for a cure-or just wanting a friend to lift him into the healing waters that he thought could make him well. Then Jesus came by and asked him a simple question: ‘Do you want to get well?’ The man didn’t yell, ‘Yes, of course I want to get well!’ at the top of his voice as we might expect. Instead, he gave an explanation for why he hadn’t been made well up to this point.
We also may try to explain or even make excuses: why we were late for work, didn’t finish a project on time or can’t change something in our lives. We can come up with a million excuses for why we can’t follow God. For me, those excuses include: I don’t have enough time, I’m too busy, I don’t have enough money or I’m too afraid. Sometimes it seems we can’t even imagine the ways in which God can change us.
In today’s reading, Jesus listened to the man’s explanation and then healed him, then and there. When we come to Jesus and ask to change, to be made well, we can lay down our excuses. And then we can begin to walk side by side with Jesus in a life more abundant than we could ever imagine.
Prayer: Dear God, thank you for listening to us and calling us to change in ways we cannot now imagine. Amen