Tuesday 4th Week of Lent
The Lord is teaching us how sin not only isolates us from God but from other people too.
In the Gospel, Jesus cures a crippled man
and commands him to take up his mat and walk.
It’s hard to believe that for 38 years
no one helped this man into the waters.
If that was me, I’d sit on the edge of that pool
and let gravity take over, and just fall in.
Perhaps the man thought of this
but decided against it.
If no one helped him into the pool,
would anyone save him from drowning
if he wasn’t the first one in
when the angel of God stirred the waters?
Think too, of the loneliness in his heart.
No family member, no friend,
no one with an ounce of compassion
came along in 38 years to help him.
Had he sinned in such a horrendous way
that people grew to hate him?
Jesus did tell him to sin no more.
The Lord is teaching us how sin
not only isolates us from God
but from other people too.
It’s like a fence or a wall
that has become so popular in many neighborhoods;
“keep out – leave me alone.
I’ll open the gate
to only certain people I know won’t hurt me”.
(Well now, we all have a 6-foot fence around us
that we don’t want but better obey for our own good.)
Jesus asks us what he asked the paralytic,
“Do you want to be well?”
He didn’t answer yes;
He said “Well you see,
no one will put me in the water”.
That was his excuse to stay paralyzed.
Do we have similar excuses
not to ask forgiveness and healing
from what ails our bodies and souls?
Let’s not allow sin to so cloud our hope and imagination
that we can’t conceive what it would be like
to live in the free spirit of Jesus?
Let’s lay the excuses aside.
We might find how easy it is
to pick up our mats
and walk in the way of the Lord.