We've been looking at three questions that Jesus asked during the course of his time here on earth. The first question was, "Who do you say that I am?" The second was, "What do you want me to do for you?" The third question that we want to consider is, "Do you want to get well?"
This is the question that Jesus asked the man who had been an invalid for thirty-eight years. At first glance it seems silly, asking an invalid who is waiting to get into the healing waters of the Pool of Bethesda. Of course he wants to get well! Who wouldn't? I think it's interesting that the man didn't answer in the affirmative. He told Jesus that there was no one to help him into the water so he could get healed. There are a couple of ways to look at his answer. I have heard preachers say that he was making an excuse, and blaming his lack of healing on others. These were usually during sermons that were in the "things you can do" genre. When Jan and I were talking about this, she said that maybe he didn't realize there was a way to healing other than going into the water. Jesus, the Healer, was standing next to the man, but he didn't recognize him. I think Jan is on to something there.
It is true that sometimes we say we want to be healed, but we don't want to go through the process of healing. In The Great Divorce, C.S. Lewis tells of a Ghost who refuses to let an Angel kill the reptile on his shoulder because it would hurt too much. Sometimes being made well is a painful process, and sometimes we think it's easier to live with the brokenness than to go through something that may bring pain, but that will ultimately bring healing and wholeness.
Sometimes, we don't recognize the source of our healing. We look at all the things we think can make us whole. Things like relationships, alcohol or drugs, church activities, work, vacations, or any number of things. We don't recognize that the only one who can heal us is right there. Jesus is the Healer, he is the only one that can redeem our brokenness and make us whole.
If we truly want to get well, Jesus is the only one who is able to heal and make us whole. There may be pain involved, but sometimes healing takes a bit of pain. It's like a doctor cleaning a wound with something that stings. It may hurt for a while, but the end result is worth it.
Do you want to get well?