Living Free Every Day®
A ministry of LivingFree.org
Wednesday, December 4, 2013
"When Jesus saw him and knew he had been ill for a long time, he asked him, 'Would you like to get well?'” (John 5:6 NLT)
Thoughts for Today
In John 5:1-15 we read about Jesus healing a lame man by a pool of healing waters. This man had been sick for thirty-eight years. Year after year he lay by that pool. When Jesus saw him, he asked a surprising question: "Would you like to get well?"
This man had waited almost forty years for someone to lift him into the waters. But no one could help him from that pool of self-pity, that ocean of grief, and his misplaced faith—no one except Jesus. And no one can free any of us from crippling shame, guilt, self-loathing, and condemnation—except Jesus.
Jesus told the man to get up and walk. And he did.
Consider this …
After abortion, we are afflicted. We experience betrayal . . . self-pity . . . self-loathing . . . and regret. We feel dejected and trapped: I wish I could go back and undo everything, but it's too late for that now.
But Jesus asks, Do you want to get well? Do you want to be free from suffering in your spirit and your soul? Do you want a new life now? He is not asking if you believe in a new life. No, he's asking if you want it.
That question is stunning. Think about it.
Wanting life to be different and wanting to change are not the same thing. Change takes effort and commitment. You know you'll have to work on addressing problems, but you wonder if you're up to the task. You may worry more about what others will think than about pursuing peace of mind. You may feel too defeated and debilitated to move.
The lame man had faith, but he couldn't activate it on his own because his focus was way off. Jesus helped him shift focus from things outside his control (other people, his disability) and onto something he could control (his attitude and faith, self-regard, unhealthy dependence on others, and obedience to God's commands). When he shifted his focus to Jesus, he opened the door to healing.
Do you want to get well? The first step is to shift your focus to Jesus. His love. His forgiveness. This can motivate you to move forward in faith, even after sin has left you weakened and feeling stuck.
Lord, I've been like this too long. Help me stop dwelling on my weakness and focus on your strength. Help me make the commitment to move forward. In Jesus' name . . .
These thoughts were drawn from …
Cradle My Heart: Finding God's LOVE After Abortion by Kim Ketola. In this book, Kim seeks to help those hurt by abortion to grieve with hope. Sharing her story and the stories of ten other women, she reveals that God's love is not a casualty of the abortive process. With an appendix of helpful resources and a study and discussion guide included, Cradle My Heart is a timely and important resource for the hurting woman, the counselor, and the church.
With an understanding and empathetic voice, Kim Ketola exposes the hurt in your heart, reveals the healing in God's heart, and brings the two together to create a whole heart where restoration and celebration are possible.
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