Sunday, February 15, 2009

An Invalid at the Pool

I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, sot that you may know him better.
Ephesians 1:17

Now this is eternal life: that they may know you, the only true God... John 17:3

See a theme?

What do you think would happen if we made our primary objective the pursuit of knowing God?

Knowing Christ? Knowing His Holy Spirit?

Would we be totally disconnected from reality? Would we be unable to have normal, fun lives?

What would happen?

I'll tell you one thing that would happen: we'd find ourselves. We'd find the "real" me.

If we pursued Christ (which, by the way, it's not hard because he's not allusive), if we did, we might just find that so much of what pulls us down, makes us feel crappy, feeds our insecurity and/or pride, and pours guilt over us would fall to the wayside. The more of Christ, the less of "Me." The more of Christ, the more we see how much all that stuff doesn't matter.

More Christ = Less Insecurity
More Christ = Less Need for Materials
More Christ = Less Need for Applause
More Christ = Less Need for People Pleasing
More Christ = Less Shame, Guilt, Pain, Loneliness, and Rejection

To know Christ is to know who we really are. And Who are we? Who is the Real Me? Let me see if I can't find some things. Hmm, oh hang on, here's some stuff...

We are people at peace with God. (Romans 5:1)

We are alive to God. (Romans 6:11)

We are a people under no condemnation. (Romans 8:1)

We are controlled by the Spirit of God. (Romans 8:9)

Oh, I could go on and on in Romans, but I'll let you go read it and see all the goodies in there.
Umm, oh, here's some more...

We are people being kept strong by Christ. (I Corinthians 1:8)

We have the mind of Christ. (did you know that! I Corinthians 2:16)

We are daughters of God through faith in Jesus. (Galatians 3:26)

We have been blessed with every spiritual blessing in Jesus. (Ephesians 1:3)
Okay, this one right here is one we could stop on for a bit. This one line in Ephesians could be the freedom verse for us. We have every spiritual blessing in Christ. Think on that: what do you need? Freedom? Insight? Strength? Patience? Joy?

What do you need? Do you want to get well? Jesus asked that very question to a man in John 5.

There was a man who had been an invalid for thirty-eight years and had been at a pool in Jerusalem where people believed they could be healed if they go in the water. Well, being an invalid he couldn't just jump in. So, when Jesus strolls up, he sees this guy and asks him, "Do you want to get well?"

At first glance it looks like a pretty silly question. The guy shoots back, "Sir, 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."

I wonder...does Jesus ask the same of us? Here we are surrounded by "healing waters" in Jesus and so many of us go on sick, broken, and bound up in so much stuff that we can't even get in the water, or we believe that everyone else is getting more of Jesus than us, or we just like the broken place because it's familiar. (ouch)

What if we preoccupied ourselves with knowing God instead of knowing ourselves? How long have we hung around in our brokenness and given excuses?

Jesus asks us, "Do you want to get well?"

Do we?

Do you?

I do, and that means I have to get honest and get to know Him. We've been saved and we've been redeemed, but sometimes we keep living like an invalid at the healing waters.

Jesus said one more thing to the man, "Get up! Pick up your mat and walk."

It's time to stop living paralyzed by our own "Me's" and get up and walk in the power and love of Jesus!

I want to ask you again, what do you think would happen if we made our primary objective the pursuit of knowing God? What if we lifted our eyes from our brokenness and looked into the face of Christ? What would He say to us? I have a clue..."Get up...and walk."

I am the Lord you God, who brought you out of Egypt so that you would no longer be slaves to the Egyptians; I broke the bars of your yoke and enabled you to walk with heads held high. Leviticus 26:25

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