Comprehend the Word: John 5:1-17
"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?”
“Sir,” the invalid replied, “I have no one to help me into the pool when the water is stirred. While I am trying to get in, someone else goes down ahead of me.”
Then Jesus said to him, “Get up! Pick up your mat and walk.” At once the man was cured; he picked up his mat and walked."
Contemplate the Word:
The past year held a continuous stream of challenges that left me feeling not so well at times. My maternity leave ended a year ago and after much prayer, I sensed God asking me to stay home with my two girls. Shortly after, my husband took a pay cut due to the economy and restructuring at work. My dad got remarried this year and I wasn’t prepared. My mom got engaged as well and she will be married in the fall. My husband has been taking Freedom Session, an intensive healing discipleship program, which has been hard for him so it has been hard for me too. And God has been asking me to say yes to some things recently that have been far out of my comfort zone.
The man in this story was also feeling unwell. He had been an invalid, unable to walk, for 38 years. Even with everything he had tried, he could not heal himself. But Jesus asked him, “Do you want to get well?”
As my storms have raged, I’ve sensed Jesus asking me the same question: do you want to be made well? He was inviting me to be made well in the midst of my storms, rather than barely hanging on until they were over.
How does this happen? Being well isn’t dependent on the storm ceasing, but where I choose to stare in the midst of storms.
As we all know, storms don’t discriminate, and they are demanding. Though we cannot control the storms that come, we can control where we stare in the storm. Our default is to stare at the storm, but we’re invited to change where we look. I have found that choosing to be with Jesus in prayer anchors me. Being with the Healer is where I have found healing. In the midst of feeling overwhelmed by the storms of today and tomorrow— stresses, people, tasks, needs, wants, comparisons, there is an invitation: fix your eyes on Jesus.
Our lives will follow where our eyes are fixed.
This month, we’ll be diving deeply into a story where a man experienced healing from being with Jesus, and we are going to learn how to be with Him ourselves because in prayer we experience the shelter of Jesus' presence, perspective and power in the midst of life's raging storms.
Converse with the Word:
This simple blueprint is taken from the Lord’s prayer when Jesus taught His disciples to pray. Talk to the Father today, just like Jesus did using what you read today to as your topic of conversation with Him. See the attached guide for more on this!
AIM for HE (Father in Heaven, your name/kingdom/will… )
Father in Heaven, You are the source of Life and are able to make me well. You came to heal and to save.
ASK for ME: (Jesus, give me/forgive me/deliver me from… )
Jesus, give me faith to believe that you can and want to make me well. Forgive my excuses and for not asking. Deliver me from doubt.
ABIDE in WE: (Holy Spirit fill/empower/change/reveal… )
Holy Spirit, fill me so I believe truth and live the truth that you will make me well if I want. All in Jesus' name.
Going Deeper With the Word:
Attached you’ll find a simple 8 page study guide to accompany the weekly Word you’ll receive each Wednesday in April. We recommend printing it off so you're prepared to get into God's Word with Him.
Schedule 20 minutes this week before next Wednesday to open your Bible and read John 5:1-17. Use the attached guide to kickstart your conversations with Jesus. He is everything, so doesn’t it make sense for us to learn to be with Him?
As I read, I couldn't help but wonder: What if the man had ignored Jesus? What if the man didn’t feel like talking? What if the man assumed Jesus was talking to someone else? What if the man was offended by Jesus’ question when He said, “Do you want to get well?” What if he hadn’t been at the pool that day and had missed Jesus completely?
I don’t want to miss Him, and I know you don’t either.
I’m praying that as you get into the Word this week, the Word gets deep into your heart!