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Grace to Get Up

Read John 5:1-8


John 5:5-8

Now a certain man was there who had an infirmity thirty-eight years. When Jesus saw him lying there, and knew that he already had been in that condition a long time, He said to him, “Do you want to be made well?”

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.”

Jesus said to him, “Rise, take up your bed and walk.”



Spiritual Direction
"For an angel went down at a certain time into the pool and stirred up the water; then whoever stepped in first, after the stirring of the water, was made well of whatever disease he had." John 5:4

I read this today while I sat at the beach close to my home. I waited for the Lord to speak, He impressed the scripture upon my heart. I watched the boats and looked at the water and felt the gentle seabreeze. The Lord told me to take off my shoes and go into the water, I did not argue it was 98 degrees today. I stood in the water and I heard him say to me


"My people are paralzyed in their infirmity they know not of My grace. My presence produces grace, grace produces power and power- strength to get up."


Have you ever felt stuck? Maybe you are like that man, with an infirmity that renders you powerless and unable to get up. Maybe its grief and loss, a challenging marriage, difficult relationship, or the ghosts of the past and their painful reminders. Whatever the issue is you can see the pool, but you can't get up. This man lay next to the pool watching everyone else get their healing for 38 years and he could not get up. When approached by Jesus, our Lord asked him how long he had been there. Silly question being that He is the Son of God and already knew right? No! In order for change to happen God has to first draw our attention to the problem. There is a disturbance created in our soul that stirs up the desire to get up. The man like most of us was waiting for someone to put him in the water. We cannot depend on human help, we must look to the Lord. We cannot wait until our circumstances change to get well either.

Jeremiah 17:5-6 NKJV


5 Thus says the Lord:


“Cursed is the man who trusts in man

And makes flesh his strength,

Whose heart departs from the Lord.

6 For he shall be like a shrub in the desert,

And shall not see when good comes,

But shall inhabit the parched places in the wilderness,

In a salt land which is not inhabited.


When we look to sources outside of God's presence we deny God's power. Then we are removed from access to the grace that is available to us through Jesus Christ. Jesus pointed out the problem with intentions to deal with it. God does not create a holy disturbance in our souls for the sake of finger pointing. His presence produced grace, power and strength and the man got up and walked. He put himself into the pool to finally recieve his healing. The grace of God empowers us to do what we cannot do on our own. Getting up seems so simple and I suppose it is in the absence of infirmity. When we are wounded getting up can be impossible. We need the grace of our Lord through Jesus Christ to empower us so that we can make it to the pool. Looking for someone to put us in the pool is no guarantee that we will make it in.

Before your circumstances can change our hearts must change. We must encounter Christ at the pool of Bethsaida, respond to the holy disturbance in our souls that makes room for grace.


Grace not only gives strength to get up, it also follows us all the way to the end of our journey. The mat we lay on needs to go! We need to get up and experience God's ability and intention to heal us. Through grace we grow to trust God and a permanent transformation takes place. We are finshed works through Christ. We are image bearers and image bearers are not stuck! Hallelujah for the truth!



Homework:


1. Meditate on this passage and pray that God creates a holy disturbance that gets you ready to get up.


2. Identify the outside sources you may be looking to for help to be healed. Repent ( turn away from) and ask the Lord for forgivenss and grace to look to Him for all that you need to get up. Example: "if you heal my marriage first Lord, then I can heal"


3. Pray for God's grace to get up, take up your mat and walk to the pool for your healing.


I suggest journaling thoughts and feelings and praying over them.


I pray you experience the fullness of God's presence, power and grace that will give you strength to get up!

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