A 38-Year-Old Invalid
“One who was there had been an invalid for thirty-eight years. When Jesus saw him lying there and learned that he had been in this condition for a long time, he asked him, ‘Do you want to get well?'” (John 5:5, 6 NIV)
I read John 5 as part of my devotional time this morning and this passage leaped out at me. This man had been an invalid for 38 years! Unwhole, crippled, longing for answers that never came his way. Seeking, hoping, trusting, despairing…but no change…for 38 years.
And I’m 38 years old.
I began to imagine what it would be like to be an invalid all my life; if all I could remember is being incomplete, marred, and inadequate. Striving for healing and self-sufficiency, and seeking comfort in remedies just beyond my reach.
And then I realized that, in some ways, I am much like that broken man. I am incomplete, and often seek completeness in things that never deliver. And just like this man, the path to wholeness is right before me. It has always been there, I have often failed to see it.
Today I pray that we all come into contact with our brokenness. Not to drive us to despair. But to remind us that, despite all the promises of satisfaction and completeness offered around, only Christ can truly make us whole.
And that’s just what he offers to do.