Early in Jesus' earthly ministry, He came across a man who had been paralyzed for thirty-eight years, who was lying by the Pool of Bethesda. At certain times during the year, an angel of the Lord would come down from heaven, stir the water, and the one who entered the water first after the angel, would be healed. This man whom Jesus met, time after time, was too slow dragging himself into the pool. Though he failed to be healed after so many years, he never gave up hope. He never stopped waiting for God's mercy. Then one day, God arrived.
Jesus asked this man, "Do you want to be made well?" (John 5.6) This was a common dialogue between Jesus and those who would be healed, and the Gospel shares this with us for our inspiration? We should hear the question as if Jesus is asking YOU AND ME, "Do WE want to be healed?" Once we can open our hearts to Him, then He can heal us. This paralyzed man shared his need, "Sir, I have no man to put me into the pool," and Jesus met his need.
I had the blessing to visit the Pool of Bethesda just weeks before the pandemic crippled our nation and community in 2020. Now, more than two years later, I imagine myself gazing down at the Pool and asking God to heal our community, city, and society. Many in our community are suffering, but feel alone without hope for healing. Many of us are sitting by watching ‘to see’ if they will be able to ‘get in the pool’ before anyone else. It is us to the Church to ‘be’ Christ for each of those who are suffering.
As I meet more community members who are either themselves suffering from addiction, or who may have family and friends suffering from addiction, I think about the Pool of Bethesda. Nobody is alone, nor should anyone be without hope for healing. It doesn’t matter if we suffer from addiction or some rare illness. We all have someONE Who is our help and our hope.
Are you suffering from addiction? God can heal you. Do you have a friend or family member suffering from addiction, or some other illness? Don’t just sit and watch. God can heal them. Join us for our monthly Saint Anastasia’s Fellowship on the 1st Friday of each month. Together we can ‘get in the pool’ and ask God to heal, and He will heal.