Do you want to be well

To say that I am a procrastinator would be unfair. I do not procrastinate but I do get easily distracted.
The first thing that I do Saturday morning is to come up with a plan for the day. Then I collect my materials, and tools and head off. Somewhere between “heading off” and getting there I get distracted. Typically these distractions are well intentioned but they are detours none the less.
“Look, its snowing, I should plow the path before it gets too deep. It looks as though the snow blower needs some gas, I should head down to Ace. While I’m at Ace I really should get that new saw blade for the task that I have later on my list. And on and on it goes. By the time lunch rolls around, I have gotten so munch done but am still on item one on my list.
When I read today’s gospel, I cannot help but feel good about myself. I mean, look at the sick guy in the story. For 38 years he has been trying to get from the edge of the pool into the water, with no luck. For 38 years somebody always seems to be cutting in front of him.
I really need to get Mary to read this story. It sort of make the fact that it has taken me three weeks to tile the bathroom not look so bad.
Take today’s gospel is the 18th miracle, by Jesus, listed in the New Testament. Jesus sees a man that has been ill for 38 years. “When Jesus saw him lying there and knew that he had been ill for a long time, he said to him, “Do you want to be well?” The sick man answered him, “Sir, I have no one to put me into the pool when the water is stirred up; while I am on my way, someone else gets down there before me.”
For 38 years, you are trying to tell me that for 38 years every single time that the “water is stirred up”, and he gets up to bathe someone cuts in front of him? 38 years and not once did someone say ….” No, no, you go first”?
No offense but you have to love the comment that Jesus makes to him, “Do you want to be well?” It is sort of like going to confession time after time and confessing the same offense. “I really want to stop eating meat on Fridays during lent but 5 b’s barbeque just opened up their new location and it is so good that I cannot help myself.” It’s like Jesus should just look me in the eye and say, “do you want to be well?”.
And then don’t get me started on the guys that stop this man for carrying his mat home on the sabbath. “Are you kidding me? I have been coming to that well for 38 years, this guy cures me, and you want me to wait until Monday before going home and telling my kids?”
There always seems to be something in the way of us progressing in our faith. There always seems to be something for us to blame. Someone cuts me off, today is the wrong day, they are not being holy enough for me. We are always coming up with reasons not to wash in the pool of Bethesda. Hopefully not 38 years of reasons but reasons none the less. And perhaps all of this is just us overthinking things.
After all, after 38 years of illness all that it took was Jesus saying, “Do you want to be well?”
Maybe the message for our Lenten journey is that we should simply “Rise, take up our mat, and walk.”

JN 5:1-16

There was a feast of the Jews, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem.
Now there is in Jerusalem at the Sheep Gate
a pool called in Hebrew Bethesda, with five porticoes.
In these lay a large number of ill, blind, lame, and crippled.
One man was there who had been ill for thirty-eight years.
When Jesus saw him lying there
and knew that he had been ill for a long time, he said to him,
“Do you want to be well?”
The sick man answered him,
“Sir, I have no one to put me into the pool
when the water is stirred up;
while I am on my way, someone else gets down there before me.”
Jesus said to him, “Rise, take up your mat, and walk.”
Immediately the man became well, took up his mat, and walked.

Now that day was a sabbath.
So the Jews said to the man who was cured,
“It is the sabbath, and it is not lawful for you to carry your mat.”
He answered them, “The man who made me well told me,
‘Take up your mat and walk.'”
They asked him,
“Who is the man who told you, ‘Take it up and walk’?”
The man who was healed did not know who it was,
for Jesus had slipped away, since there was a crowd there.
After this Jesus found him in the temple area and said to him,
“Look, you are well; do not sin any more,
so that nothing worse may happen to you.”
The man went and told the Jews
that Jesus was the one who had made him well.
Therefore, the Jews began to persecute Jesus
because he did this on a sabbath.

March 21, 2023

Share any comments, thoughts or questions through the links below, or email deaconed@crestedbuttecatholic.org.

Print your tickets

PHP Code Snippets Powered By : XYZScripts.com