And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus.
• God is the one who supplies our needs as soon as we begin to worry we take on the responsibility of meeting our own needs.
1 Sometime later, Jesus went up to Jerusalem for one of the Jewish festivals. 2 Now there is in Jerusalem near the Sheep Gate, a pool, which in Aramaic is called Bethesda (be-thez-da) and which is surrounded by five covered colonnades. 3 Here a great number of disabled people used to lie—the blind, the lame, the paralyzed.  [b] 5 One who was there had been an invalid for thirty-eight years. 6 When Jesus saw him lying there and learned that he had been in this condition for a long time, he asked him, “Do you want to get well?”
7 “Sir,” the invalid replied, “I have no one to help me into the pool when the water is stirred. While I am trying to get in, someone else goes down ahead of me.” 8 Then Jesus said to him, “Get up! Pick up your mat and walk.” 9 At once the man was cured; he picked up his mat and walked.
(1) We all have our challenges to face. As children we we’re either too short, too tall, too fat, or too skinny. Someone else was always smarter, or faster, or more popular. As adults we are either too young or too old, too inexperienced or too overqualified, too busy or too alone.
Sometimes it’s more serious. We carry the baggage of being abused in some unfair way, we worry about how to pay the bills, we grieve over a loss of someone close, we agonize over a rebellious child, or we face an uncertain future of chronic physical problems.
We all experience disappointments and failures which are often beyond our own control. We get frustrated, impatient, and angry at the way life has treated us. We may then become resentful and bitter.
(2) There are some of us who appear to have it all together ,while on the inside we wonder why life seems so empty and meaningless. Maybe we can’t exactly put our finger on it,we just know that something is missing. This is usually a temporary state, but there are so many distractions around us to keep us longer the we want to stay
(3) Then for many of us, we’re so accustomed to our predictable, safe pattern of living that we become unaware there’s more God is calling us to. We get so accustomed to the familiar — day after day, week after week, month after month, year after year — that we fail to realize the difference between living and simply existing. We fail to recognize the abiding sickness which resides within our own souls.
38 Years and Counting . . .
Whatever pain we carry, it seems rather insignificant compared to the man in this story. He had been an invalid for 38 years. We don’t know the cause of his suffering. We just know that for a very long time he had been unable to do the things most of us take for granted.
But, apparently he still had hope!!!
There was something about the way Jesus looked at him, something about the way he asked the question that made it not such a foolish question after all. The answer was not as obvious as it must have seemed.
Jesus wanted to know did the man really want to be made well or not?
• He had waited in this condition for 38 years and it might have been that all hope had died. The man might have been content to remain an invalid. After all, if he was cured he would have to bear all the responsibilities of making a living for himself.
• There are people who find a sense of security in sickness, and for them, suffering isn’t that unpleasant because someone else does the work for them.
“Do you want to be made well?”
Maybe it wasn’t such a dumb question after all. The man failed to give a direct answer. Why not a simple “yes”? 38 years is a long time to be able to settle into a kind of comfort and safety even in misery.
• Being well holds more responsibilities!!!
• Being well holds more accountability!!!
But the man did respond quickly. He wanted to be healed, but he didn’t see how since he had no one to help him up when the waters stirred within the pool. Besides, someone else always managed to beat him to the punch when he did try to make his way down to those magical waters.
Still, Jesus had to know if the man really wanted to receive the gift of healing. So he quickly cut right to the heart of the matter: “Stand up, take your mat and walk.”
The Question Behind the Question
Jesus spoke the word, but God’s healing power could not be let loose until the man assumed the responsibility of choosing life and risking the possibility of transformation!
This is still true for us.
•Will you take the risk in this build of being transformed?
The deeper question Jesus asks is, “Do you really want to be changed?” If we are content to stay as we are — no matter how miserable that may be — there can be no change, no possibility of healing for us
Yes, we humans have an innate ability to adjust to just about any kind of circumstance in order to survive. Sometimes survival is the best we can hope for. Our problem, however, is that we too often settle for surviving rather than authentic living.
Jesus’ question to the man was about physical healing, but the man’s physical condition was not the main point. The question behind the question is about life itself:
• “Just what do you want from life? What is it you really need with God?”
I’m afraid that many of us really don’t know what it is we need.
• Most of what we come to expect out of life comes straight from the television or movie screen. We buy into the false reality that our culture hands to us. We sell our souls for an illusion of life — not the real thing.
Did you notice in today’s scripture there was a crowd of sick people surrounding that pool? There were many invalids — the blind, the lame, the paralyzed. And as far as we know, Jesus asked only one of them if he would like to be healed.
I’m chosen for this build.
You can’t pick and choose when you’re chosen.
• When you’re chosen, you don’t relate to everyone.. You don’t fit in..
• There is a reason why you have been in this condition for so long
• Who do chosen people hang out with? You have to walk alone when you are chosen.
What about the others? What became of them?
Surely Jesus cared about them too, but He offers no explanation as to why grace came on that day to this particular man. There is a mystery about God’s healing and grace that we cannot fathom or predict. Sometimes, though we want it desperately, healing does not come — at least in the way we want it.