Do You Want to Be Healed…In Your Body?

LAST CALL! Jesus is asking. “Sister, Brother, do you want to be healed?” Are you up for wellness in your soul, your world, your prayers? Today, he asks us as pointedly as that paralytic by the Pool of Bethesda. “Do you want to be healed/well… in your body?” If you do, hold up your hand. ‘High as you can! ‘Anybody not up for wellness? Now, lower your hands, but just to eye-level. Take a good look at that hand, front and back, left and right. Look at the skin. See the arteries and veins course through it. Any calluses? Wiggle your fingers. Bend it at the wrist. Let your own hand wave at you. Can you do it with ease, or with some stiffness or pain? A hand is a wonder, but not a foot, a knee, a hip, a heart or a brain. No wonder old David sang a song on all our behalf to ask, “O LORD, our Lord…what is man that thou art mindful…, and the son of man that thou dost care…? Yet thou hast made him little less than God, and crowned him with glory and honor.” Ps. 8 David looked on his shepherd’s hands, and was moved to sing, “Thou didst form my inward parts, thou didst knit me together in my mother's womb. I praise thee, for thou art fearful and wonderful. Wonderful are thy works! Thou knowest me right well; my frame, not hidden from thee, when I was being made in secret, intricately wrought in the depths of the earth.” PS 139

Wanna be well? Be clear. God’s hand… is on your body and being. God in heaven is expressing himself on earth… through you! To get your body and your being right, know that God-is-right-in-your-body-and-being! It wasn’t just your mamma, it was God Almighty who knitted you, embroidered you (Expositor’s). Jesus’ Great-grandpa David sings it’s so. Consider the miracle-meds with which all of us were born. They are God’s built-in testimony we are special in God’s sight. The great physicists of our day tell us the universe runs on the principal of entropy. Everything’s built to poop out, fall apart, revert to chaos. But God has built us with a fighting chance, a providential pardon of sorts.

Consider. God equips us each with miracle-med, security forces. Introduce an infection in us and whiteblood cells by the 1000’s go to Code Red, rush to the scene. In fact, God has designed us with our own counter-insurgency special fighters. Cooler and tougher than Navy Seals, they’re dispatched by the Thymus (hence, T-Cells) to take on the nastiest of invaders, and can even be sud-divided into at least 3 specialty units! Sprain your Whatsis. Your body automatically splints and casts it. (We call it swelling). Catch the wonder, the providence, the grace. Bop your bender (elbow) and a mobile army surgical unit (your very own MASH) will deploy, clear out the damaged tissue, begin the healing process. And all you thought you had was a bruise. Your skin, muscles, nerves and brain all know how to replace their cells, in whole or in part, DNA driven to express God’s grace to your body through your body. All this, God’s programmed providence. ‘His consummate love living inside us to pour all over us, the most optimal life of wellness.

David sang it. Jesus knew it. You and I, intricately wrought, wonderfully made. If you wanna be well, if you need to be healed., begin here. Take heart. Trust. Understand. Marvel. Pray with thanks before you ask with urgency. Know this. God is already on your case. ‘Has been from your birth. ‘Bestowed you with every good and perfect gift. Rest on this, rest in this. All wellness, and every healing starts from this assurance.

Wanna be healed? God’s hand is present… in your present body and being. Dear friends, we make a mistake to ask God to come to us, without understanding that he’s already with us. Pain of every kind, physical, emotional, psychological, spiritual confuses and tempts us. It obscures God from us, and tempts us to doubt he’s with us. When someone’s acting up, or acting out, we commonly ask, “What in the devil got into him/her?” Our question might be more revealing than we know! Evil often uses hurt and pain to hide God from us. But God is still there. Maybe this is what that old fella by the waters needed to learn in Jesus’ day. ‘Us, too. That ancient sufferer came to see himself only through his limits, his condition. Over the days, through the nights, across the years, he went from being Yeshua, child of God, singer of songs, maybe, maker of pots, beloved of Miriam & Eliazer, to just, well, the cripple, the begger, the nothing. He went from legs-not-good, to just no good at all. You and I know this journey! Joanna Weaver writes in Having a Mary Spirit, our Weds. Women + One Bible Study, “Because I wasn’t all good, I [came to assume] I was no good at all.” You may not say amen aloud, but you won’t be alone if you say it under your breath. God knows. Jesus did, way back beside those healing waters. And He knows right here in this room. We need to see God still in us in order to feel his touch on us.

So listen and look at what happens at poolside. Jesus sees this man through and through. He perceives what’s crippled and crumpled inside him, as well as from waist to feet. He asks, “Do you want to be well?” At first the man doesn’t really answer. He just tells that 38 year story. It’s like a great weight has been lifted. Jesus never lowers him into the water, ‘doesn’t need it. ‘Never touches, much less lifts him. Instead, he reveals the healing power God’s had in him all along. He releases the glory that’s always lain within this man. Jesus has the power to do that. Maybe Jesus alone, when we ourselves have somehow lost the key. And this fellow is healed…straight away… and he picks up his bed. And he walks… after all these years. O, Jesus, sweet Jesus!

Wanna be restored and renewed? ‘Be healed and be well in your body and being? Then do as Christ says because you believe in what Christ has said and done! (I know pain and suffering aren’t easily lifted. Not every ailment will just go away. Cancer isn’t cancelled; arthritis still ain’t right. Cholesterol’s still a clogger and a stroke can you leave you body-broke. But, by Jesus, we are not helpless. We are not hope-less. We are not defined by dis-ability, or defeated by despair.) In company and conversation with Jesus, there is reason to believe we too can get off our beds and get on our feet. That is, if we really want to be healed.

What then, shall we do? Be specific, pastor. Don’t leave us lying about, with no one to help us draw near to the source of wellness.

Here are some things to take home that will help.

1. Use what is well in you already. And imagine all that God has already put within you to make you whole. Don’t fall for the notion that in wellness, you’re all alone. God has made you intricately, wondrously. Your DNA is God-infused; whatever your lot, God is already at work in you. Remember. Trust what Scripture promises. “He who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.” Phil. 1:6

2. Never let what limits you define you. God has given you much more. We’re never just a C Student, a challenged-child’s parent, a government worker, a cancer patient, an alcoholic, an on-line junky, a widow, a senior, a doubter. We are each a child of God. ‘A sinner, but, for whom Christ died. ‘On a cross that crucifies all that lies beyond our DNA & within the Devil’s grasp. Friday’s not our destination. Sunday is. A Garden is, if we will claim it. Remember. Trust. “He who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.” Phil. 1:6

3. Work with God’s program-for-wellness inside you, not against it. This is the, “Don’t smoke, don’t chew, and don’t go with the folks that do,” section. Don’t do what denies the wonder God made in you! (Hardly a news show, magazine or web-site lacks a list.) Give God help, be a good host to this hope: He who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.

4. Put yourself in places that are healing, body and soul. 38 years that fella went to the pool. That counts for something, now as then. My mamma was always good at the right question when I was goin’ the wrong way. Likely yours too. My mom would look at me now and then and ask, “Isn’t there someplace you’re supposed to be?” God still asks. At church, on your knees, in the Book, in service. After all: He who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.

5. Know that Jesus will come for you, speak to you. When he does, if you wanna be healed, in your body and being, here’s all you need say, Precious Lord, take my hand, lead me on, let me stand,

I am tired, I am weak, I am worn;

through the storm through the night, lead me on to the light: Take my hand, precious Lord, lead me home.

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