“‘Do you want to be made well?’ Jesus asked the man who had been living as an invalid for 38 years…Usually people were begging Jesus to heal them, to cure them from whatever illness had taken hold…People went to great lengths to get this healer’s attention. But not this man. Curious, isn’t it?” begins Rev. Mandy England Cole. She continues, “38 years of chronic illness, yet, he didn’t cry out to Jesus from among the sick and infirmed who were lying around the porticoes at the Sheep Gate…He didn’t seek out Jesus at all, but rather, Jesus sought him out, asking: ‘Do you want to be made well?’ The answer seems obvious – of course he wants to be made well.” In today’s passage from John 5:1-9, Jesus told the man to stand up, take up his mat, and walk, and the man does it. Cole says, “It is a miracle that the man is able to take up his mat and walk after being ill for 38 relentless years. It is also a miracle that Jesus invites him to see the impossible, to opt out of systems that do not lead to wellness, and to participate in his own healing and renewal.” Jesus invites us to do the same. Will we listen and obey?
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