It was this wild idea. A string of events that came together at that perfect point.... what does a disciple do? See what I do... you do it too. Me... I'm studying the book of John. So I asked... do you want to too? Yeses and requests began popping up, even in the unexpected. Our little group is growing, it is exciting and as I teach and share and search and lean... I am growing. Why wouldn't I? Anytime we crack God's Word with a serious and searching heart... should we expect anything less than growth, change... profound revelation???
So yesterday I sprawled on my couch, cozy against the corner with the pages of my young yet worn NRSV open and highlighted to the hilt, notes and scribbles all over the words of John's gospel. I interrogated, because that is what I have learned to do. ASK, search, ASK, pray, ASK and wait and know God has a message. He had a message then and He still has a message now.
God, what is the message today? What do you want me to see in these old familiar words I have read so many times in John's 5. "Stand up, take your mat and walk." and he does. HE DOES, Lord, but what more?
Then I hear it, that beautiful voice of my Father, lean closer, child....
6When Jesus saw him lying there and knew that he had been there a long time, he said to him, "do you want to be made well?"
Jesus SAW HIM
Jesus KNEW his circumstances
Jesus ASKED HIM do you want to....
Jesus sees ME
Jesus knows my circumstances
Jesus asks me do you want to....?
This sick man makes excuses. Is he excusing himself? Is he saying, yes, he wants to, BUT? There must have been a 'yes' implied there somewhere because, then...
8Jesus said to him, "stand up, take your mat and walk."
It isn't just the command that gets me though, it is the response that follows which drives it home....
9At once the man was made well, and he took up his mat and began to walk...
How often do I need help yet I pray only for the way I see out. How often does Christ stand in front of me and say "Do you want to...?" with His intention being to fix the problem in an unexpected way? And (sadly) how many times do I miss it because I am busy telling Him why I can't?
Jesus SAW HIM.... He sees me.... Do I see Jesus?
Jesus KNEW his circumstances... He knows mine... Do I trust that the circumstances are inconsequential to the King of Kings?
Jesus ASKED HIM... He asks me... Do I respond with excuses or anticipating a miracle?
Whether it is a rut, a catastrophe, or even a fleeting moment of challenge; I suddenly feel more deeply inspired to not just KNOW Jesus is in control but to SEE Him, Focus on HIM (not the circumstance) and Focus on His solution... not just what my eyes can fathom as the solution. If my eyes, thoughts, heart never leave His face I will certainly find myself getting up, taking my mat and walking.... and even Pharisees won't stand a chance!!!
I pray you find deep roots in old familiar passages of God's Word. I pray you know each moment of each day rests in His tender eyes, His capable hands, His loving heart. I pray you see Him, trust Him and respond to him with anticipation.
Also linking up with some of these