Do you want to be made well?

         One man was there who had been ill for thirty-eight years.
         When Jesus saw him lying there
         and knew that he had been there a long time,
         he said to him, “Do you want to be made well?”

                  —John 5.5-6

Sometimes not.
We want to hang onto our hurt.
We’re accustomed to adapting; sanity seems odd.
Sobriety scares us. Wholeness intimidates us.
It’s uncertain beyond the prison gates.
There’s shelter in anger, in victimhood, in helplessness.
And how can we live without the pity?
What would life be like without the drama?

Do you want to be forgiven?
Sometimes not. There’s stability in despair.
You can get so far behind you don’t have to run.
You can get comfy in the doghouse.

And there is this: someone will tell you
it is not lawful for you to carry your mat.
Easier to stay paralyzed than to bring down the temple.

Sometimes the greatest courage is needed
not to fight monsters, but to live an ordinary life.

Do you want to be made well?
It will be work. It will bring on the unknown.
You will stand on new legs. It will hurt.

Take up your mat and walk.
He will find you.



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