Once there was a guy who had been lame for 38 years. Each day he waited...waited for someone to lay him in the pool of Bethesda where tradition said he might get healed. 38 years...half of a lifetime. Jesus enters the scene and asks him an important question.
"Would you like to get well?" John 5:6
What an interesting question. This week I'll be writing about Biblical responses to the big question - Why do bad things happen to good people? There are really so many biblical answers. This text gets into one reason that we rarely consider...
Sometimes bad things keep happening because we don't want to allow God to work in us to make it stop. Jesus needed to hear that this man truly wanted the 'bad thing' to stop. His response to Jesus is telling: "I can't sir." He expected the bad thing to stop only if a certain thing happened...but Jesus was going to ask Him to make some changes that had nothing to do with how he thought he might find reprieve.
At times, bad things happen because we are stuck in our own expectations or buried in our own self-absorbed thinking. Would you like to get well? Would you like the 'bad thing' to stop? Be ready to move or do something different. For the man who had suffered for 38 years, the next thing he heard was 'Stand up, pick up your mat and walk.' I doubt that is what he expected yet he proved he wanted to get well when he obediently followed the command of Jesus. Will we?