Posts Tagged ‘Jesus’

Crazy question

Posted: December 4, 2012 in Devotions, religion
Tags: , , , , ,

This morning I am reading the Gospel of John and there is a passage that always makes my head spin. Jesus is in Jerusalem and goes to the pool at Bethesda. There are many people there that we would refer as disabled. The ESV uses the term invalid, the blind lame and paralyzed. They were waiting for a pool of water to whirl to get in and be healed. This is where this man was. He has had a disability for 38 years. Jesus asks him a question, “Do you want to be healed?”

This is where my head spins. This guy has been an invalid for 38 years and is waiting to be miraculously healed by a pool of water. This to me seems the act of a desperate man begging for normalcy. Why in the world would someone ask him if he “wanted” to be healed. Of course he wants to be healed! Or at least that’s my first impression. Obviously Jesus asked him for a reason.

His response was that no one was there to help him. That someone else gets to the water first. He never actually said yes. This baffles me. If someone asked if I wanted to be healed. If I had been struggling for 38 years. If someone had the nerve to ask such a question, I would want to yell at them of course. Why ask such a crazy question! Or would I?

I also take note that his particular disability is not named. We can infer that it may be something with his legs as he said he needed someone to put him into the water. In reality it’s not mentioned because it’s not important. What is important is that he needs healing.

I think the question,”do you want to be healed?” is a question we do need to ask ourselves. We can all look inside and see some issue we are struggling with. I’m not talking about a physical issue, but an emotional or spiritual issue. Do we really want to be released from our struggle, or as the man at the pool, are we making excuses because we have grown accustomed to the struggle.  That the issue is now the norm and for it to be taken away we may feel as though part of us is leaving?

John 5

The pool of Bethesda.

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In about twenty minutes it is my birthday. It marks the end of one more year of the race called life. Another year of opportunities grasped and wasted. It has been one more year that I must reflect and ask “what have I done?” I’m actually turning 25 in 15 minutes. I will be a quarter of a century old. I’m finishing my 25th year of the race.

As I look back over the last 25 years, I can’t help but look at awe in everything that has happened. Don’t worry; I won’t bore you with all the details. Many of you that will actually read this know many of the stories of my past by heart. There have been times of great sadness, when I wanted to give up and not live another day. I think back of high school and how many times I asked God that I would never wake up again. I praise God those times are over. As I look back I’m reminded of King David. How, he would praise God in the worst of it all. He would ask God to end his life because of the pressures of this world. He was persecuted by other nations. He was falling into sin. He was also a man after God’s own heart. Reading the Psalms I think of David as a bipolar teenager sometimes. High’s followed by the lows. I wonder if I’m wrong in that. In one breathe He was begging God for deliverance and in the next He was praising God for His mighty grace and power. One thing I will never forget from high school and the worst parts of my life is that God is my shelter. He is my strength. Troubles will come, and when they do His arms surround me.

These last 25 years have been amazing. I met my wife in high school. The way that happened is a joke only God can put together. Who knew that taking a girl to a study on how to study the Old Testament would lead to a relationship and a marriage! Our marriage was filled with a billion blessings. One of them was that my mother was able to make it. That was something I never believed would happen. Part of the problems of my high school time was that I didn’t believe my mom would live to my graduation. There were hospital trip after hospital trip. Then an amazing thing happened, something that I would have never believed unless I was there. God allowed me the privilege of walking her home to the arms of Christ. Now that’s a high point! At Casey’s, in Melcher Dallas Iowa she asked Jesus to save her. I was able to witness a partial miraculous healing that God did on her heart. Not just spiritually and emotionally, but physically as well. The month after she accepted Christ we went to the doctor. The doctor ran more tests. He found that her heart got STRONGER! Yes it was stronger! The doctor had never heard of such a thing with PPH. If memory serves me right, her heart went from pumping at %20 of a normal person’s heart to about %35. This was her confirmation that God was going to take care of her.

It is now officially my birthday. I have seen God do amazing things in my life. I have to ask myself, “what have I done in return?” I am in an ever pursuit of trying to get my thoughts organized and kept track of. During break today, at work, I downloaded Evernote again. I was able to log in under my old credentials. The last time I used it was over a year ago. In April of 2011 I imputed a dream I had in Evernote. I didn’t want to forget this dream so I wrote it in Evernote and forgot it, funny how that works. In this dream there was a bunch of random events. Towards the end of this dream I was talking to the cartoon grim reaper. I was probably watching the cartoon “The Grimm Adventures of Billy & Mandy” too much. I was talking to him about how much time I had left on earth and everything I wanted to do. He looked at the paper he held in his hand and said, “Well actually, you only have until next Tuesday.” I began to argue with him. Then he asked. “Why should you live? Are you really passionately following God?”

Now to be clear, I do not believe in the grim reaper. I do believe that God was telling me something in the dream. I woke up from it with a vivid recollection which I seldom have. The questions that grim asked me in it bugged me. Why? Because, God was the one asking me them! I look back through the rollercoaster of the last 25 years and I don’t believe I have lived passionately for God during most of it. There are highs, lows, twists and turns. I’ve made it through the tunnels and the loops and know I need to do more. God wants passion for our lives.

If you have read this far I want to share with you my heart. God wants me and you to live passionately for Him. I beg God the next 25 years will be filled with passion and boldness. One thing my mom taught me in her passing three years ago this Sunday is this. She was in a small group and she told them that every day she lays down. Due to her illness she doesn’t know if she would ever get up again. Yet, she knew she would get up again and when she did she was going to give Jesus a giant hug! Knowing Jesus is not about getting out of hell. It is a perk but that’s not the point! It’s about living your life for Him on Earth. Then turning around and spending eternity with Him! Get this, HE DIED, for me and for you. He did this out of love! The only thing He asks in return is for you to accept His gift. His death was the payment for anything and everything we have done wrong. He did it to reunite God’s children, us, back to a real relationship with Him. 

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