Here a great number of disabled people used to lie—the blind, the lame, the paralyzed. 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?” (John 5:3-6)
The Lord asked the sick man lying near the healing pool if he WANTED to get well. The man offered an excuse as his answer. How many times do we linger near the healing pool with a desire to get well, but we are unable to change. You see, we get comfortable in our sin. It becomes our security. We get comfortable in our bitterness, resentment, hopelessness. We get comfortable in our doubt, unforgiveness, anxiety, and brokenness.
I can testify that sometimes these very things that we are struggling with become habits. But, God promises us MORE. He promises us freedom from these chains. New life.
“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.” (John 5:8-9) The POWER to change comes from God, but the willingness to walk and follow through comes from us. This man hadn’t walked for thirty-eight years. His muscles probably ached when he followed through with Jesus’s command. He probably had to re-train his body how to walk, and strengthen his body so that it COULD walk. I’m sure he had to walk, walk, walk in order for him to fully recover. Do you want to get well? Are you willing to re-train some thought patterns by the power of the Holy Spirit?