A few months ago I sat in church feeling an uncomfortable question growing in my heart. The sermon was from John 5 on Jesus' brief encounter with a man who had been sick for thirty-eight years. Jesus asks this guy, who must have been sick for basically his whole life, "do you want to be healed?" and this, on the surface, seemed like a really odd thing for Jesus to say to this man. I walked out of church with the question stuck in my mind and it rolled around stuck and uncomfortable like a pebble in my shoe - why did Jesus ask this man if he wanted to be well? It seems like a stupid question to ask and that bothered me. It bothered me as I drove home. It bothered me as I made sandwiches for my family. It bothered me until the Holy Spirit finally broke through all my bother and asked me the same question "what about you? What do you want? Do you want to be healed too?" And it hit me right between the eyes - because sometimes my broken places can feel like they are too much a part of who I am to give them up. In this moment with the Holy Spirit I felt Him asking me to tell Him what I want, above every fear and in spite of every fantasy - what do I want? Do I want healing? Am I willing to stubbornly hold onto that prayer through the storms and lulls of life and everything in between? That moment was a turning point for me. It brought a handful of tough months into clearer perspective and it was a moment I came back to as I went forward.
So now here in the quiet of a Monday morning, I sit again. I sit here with Jesus - and this time He's not asking a sick man by the pool, He's asking me - what do you want? Do you want to be healed?
With Jesus there are no "but I've always been this way" escape clauses. There is no temptation, no sin, no shame, no fear, no dream, no desire, no anything that is too big or too hard for Him. Here with him I choose to be brave enough to speak it.