Sometimes the chains we wear shackled to our hearts become so comfortable, we get used to the pain and forget what it is like to be well. Perhaps some of us have never known. But the big question is—do you want to get well? Do you want to be free? Of course I do, I hear you say. But do you really?
There was a certain man that Jesus encountered who faced a crossroads in his life. He had been an invalid for thirty-eight years. When Jesus encountered the man, he asked him, “Do you want to get well?” (John 5:6).
That seems like an unusual question—or does it? Sometimes we get used to being “sick.” We become attached to our wounds. They become a part of who we are and we can’t imagine life without them. For this man, healing meant a drastic life change. He would have to get a job, become a responsible adult, and stop lounging by the pool all day. Oh, we say we want to be free, but do we?
Pain can become an idol
Not that we worship it in a good sense. But we worship it as an awesome force and allow it to control our lives. When we allow our past to control our lives and dictate our future, we are giving it the power of a god and making it an idol.
The man never did answer Jesus’ question. Jesus simply said, “Get up! Pick up your mat and walk” (John 5:1-8). And he did.
Thirty-eight years is a long time to be immobile, and yet, in my own life there were some things that had held me back for the same amount of time. I was paralyzed by feelings of inferiority, insecurity, and inadequacy because of messages from my past. Then Jesus asked me, “Do you want to get well?”
Satan wants to use our past to paralyze us. God wants to use our past to propel us! The choice is ours. The choice is yours.
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How has your life been different since your encounter with the Living God?