Let me start off by asking, am I the only one who wrestles with God? Questions, sometimes to ad nauseam, what He might be saying to me? I really wonder if He occasionally does a 'face palm' when I go on and on trying to understand, rather than just trusting.
I am so enjoying reading through the Gospel of John. Today I was stuck in chapter five. The man healed at the pool Bethesda. The story is familiar, but today, I felt it was speaking right to my heart.
Jesus shows up and asks the man, ‘Wilt thou be made whole?’ I immediately sat upright when I read that. Wilt thou be made whole? Do you really want to be made whole? Do you really want to be free from these struggles? Of course the man wanted to be made whole, right? I mean, he had an infirmity for a very long time, thirty-eight years! I want to be whole too, right? Do I? Do you? If I am going to be made whole, I am going to have to choose it, let go of what I am holding on to, believe Him.
The man answered that he had no one to put him in the pool. I argue, but I don’t understand. Perhaps if I look here or there. Try this or that, then, maybe, I will be made whole, free from this struggle.
Jesus said to him, “Rise, take up your bed and walk.” And immediately the man was made well, took up his bed, and walked.
Pretty straightforward, don’t you think? Simply rise up and walk!
Um, but . . . the questions begin to rattle around. But again, I hear, ‘Rise up and walk!’
A few verses down, after the man was questioned by the authority, Jesus finds him again. I LOVE this!! Is that not a picture of a merciful God? He came back to him, He could have slipped away, but He came back to tell the man, Behold, thou art made whole: sin no more, lest a worse thing come unto thee.
Thou art made whole. Say it with me. I am made whole. The peace washed over me this morning. I have wrestled and fought. I have gripped it so tightly that I could barely open my hands, for they had been clenched closed for so long.
The scriptures say immediately he was made whole, took up his mat and walked. I wonder, though, did he wobble a bit as he walked. Probably not, Jesus had healed him. But honestly, I am feeling a bit wobbly, shaky in the knees with this new found freedom and wholeness. I’ll keep this scripture close, to remind me, because I am sure that enemy, you know the one who roams around like a lion, the one seeking to devour, will come prowling. Old lies will need to be replaced with the truth. I am made whole. I will Rise up and WALK
Will you? What are you holding on to? What are you wrestling with God over? Do you want to be made whole? Do you want to be free from the battle? Come on, let’s do this together. I promise, my faith is shaky-wobbly faith, but it is faith. We can do this!