Let’s return back to the passage from where we left off on part 2.
John 5:6 When Jesus saw him lying there, and knew that he had already been a long time in that condition, He said to him, “Do you wish to get well?”
John 5:7 The sick man answered Him, “Sir, I have no man to put me into the pool when the water is stirred up, but while I am coming, another steps down before me.”
John 5:8 Jesus said to him, “Get up, pick up your pallet and walk.”
John 5:9 Immediately the man became well, and picked up his pallet and began to walk. Now it was the Sabbath on that day.
Jesus sees the man lying on his mat and questions him if he wants to be made well. Now think about that question for a moment. Jesus knew the answer to His question before asking it. Did He want the man to express the need – to openly verbalize it to Him? Surely it wouldn’t have been for anyone else’s benefit that he state this to Jesus. They all could clearly see, as Jesus could, that the man was lame and laying near a pool that was supposed to have healing qualities. It was obvious the man wanted to be made well. But Jesus asks him so the man could express his need to Jesus.
Jesus knows our needs. He knows our every thought. However, we still must express our needs and our weaknesses to Him, not for His benefit but for ours. We need to hear ourselves acknowledge the fact that we are not all powerful, but that we are exactly the opposite – a weak and powerless and in need of an all-powerful God.
The man answers Jesus with an excuse that he has no one to help him into the pool to be healed. We always have excuses don’t we? Whenever I bust one of my girls for something, they are incredible at coming up with some of the most creative excuses. Truth be told – they got it honest from their daddy!
Irrespective of the excuses the man had, Jesus blows past them and simply speaks **Get up, Pick up your pallet, and Walk** The same God who spoke the world into existence, speaks strength into the man’s weak legs and immediately the man gets up, picks up his mat and walks!
Can God do the same for you and I? Absolutely! Will He? Well – you nor I are qualified to figure that one out! God is sovereign and often we won’t know why we are afflicted or why we struggle with weaknesses. But we can boast in them because through them “God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.” ~ Romans 8:28
Nothing happens outside of God’s plan for our good. Often times it is through times that try us where we do the most growing! In our weak times, He strengthens us and holds us up with His right hand! Look at pictures of mountain valleys. Where do you see the growth? Is the growth on the mountain top? Usually there’s very little growth on top of the mountain. In the valley, however, it is a different scene. Vegetation grows abundantly in the valley!
It’s the same with us. When we have mountain top experiences, times when we aren’t weak – we experience little growth. Conversely, when we are in the valley, when we are weak, the conditions are perfect for us to experience growth! We grow closer to Him as we lean on Him to meet us where we are weak! Therefore we can boast all the more in our weaknesses!
Last thing I want to look at here. (I know – this is getting long – but I have a lot to say!) Look at verse 8. Jesus says Get Up, Pick Up, and Walk. In our weaknesses, we can’t just sit there and expect God to somehow fix us or give us what we need without us first taking action in faith. We cannot say we live the life of faith if we are never required to use it. The man had to take it on faith that when he attempted to stand, the strength would be in his legs to hold him up.
In faith, we need to do the same. We take our weaknesses to Him, seek Him to give us what we need to persevere, and continue our walk in faith, strengthened by His Spirit.
Yes, we don’t like to admit where we are weak, but there is great freedom when we do! Freedom is found when we realize we aren’t trapped by them, but realize God will provide exactly what we need, if we only ask! He may not deliver us from them the way we would like, but we can be confident in His plan that He has our good in mind!
Let’s not lie around waiting when we can be taking our weaknesses to Him and letting Him provide exactly what we need!