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Do you Want to be Healed?

Updated: Nov 12, 2022

I dropped my keys off on our dining room table and rushed up the stars into my bedroom, slamming the door behind me with warning cries to my youngest to NOT ENTER! At barely 8 a.m., the events of the morning had already pushed me to my breaking point and all the warning bells were going off inside, screaming of the vulnerable places in me that had been trigger by children’s tantrums and needs. I crumbled onto the floor beside the warm space heater and cried. Cried from the lack of sleep. I cried for the reminder that my sons’ fears are larger than me. I cried for the loss of moral values in our country. I cried for the constant uphill battles that some days just seem so pointless to fight. And then I cried out, "God, don't you see me? Are you really going to leave me here all alone?"


I grabbed a pillow from off the bed, deciding that this would be my permanent resting place for the day. Never mind chores, homeschool, life. I was overwhelmed and desperately in need of a moment to pout. In my moment of despair, I decided to listen to some worship music. Tears ran down my face as the lyrics infiltrated my earbuds. I clung to hope that something from these words might stick with me and give me the courage to get up off the floor and get a shower. It was then I felt the spirit prompt me to turn to another song.

As I clicked on the video the first of 2 senseless adds popped up. I counted the seconds to hit skip. Before processing thought, I almost hit skip on the next add. But as I dried my eyes the image registered, and I decided to watch it. I watched as the clip from one of the episodes of, "The Chosen", began to play. This particular episode definitely wasn't my favorite. Don't get me wrong, the story of the lame man by the pool of Bethesda being healed is a good story and all, but I can much better relate to a retelling of the “Woman at the Well” or “Mary Magdalene being redeemed”. Then the realization hit me, this man on the screen was laying down, crumpled in a ball on his side just like me. The position He had taken up was similar to mine that morning - permanent. The irony of this particular add popping up on my screen was not lost on me.

As the familiar story began to unfold Jesus asks the paralyzed man if he would like to be healed. The man immediately begins to make excuses for why healing would be impossible. The water too far away. The people around him too greedy. Jesus asks again, "Do you want to be healed?” The man begins to fight the tears and in desperation once again begins to defend his status and reasoning. And as I watched, tears of my own began to fall again. It's as if the Holy Spirit was speaking to me, "Emily, do you want to be healed? Healed from the defeat and the despair? Healed from the anger and exhaustion? Healed from the lies of the enemy that torment your mind?”

I could immediately feel all my usual excuses rising to the forefront of my conscience. I’m too tired to fight the battles. I don’t have enough time to spend in the word. I don’t know the right prayer to say. I don’t have the right people of faith in my life to anoint me with oil and declare my healing. And at the root of it, I am sure I lack the necessary amount of faith all together.

And just as is pinned by the authors of the show, I felt the Lord say again, "That’s not what I asked you. Emily, I asked you do you want to be healed?".

I squeaked out a humbled sob, "Yes, Lord, you know I do!". He replied, "Then pick up your mat and walk."

The command was clear. I knew what I needed to do. I knew it was time to dry my tears and get off the carpet, pick up my pillow and walk in faith that all that I see as way too far gone and way too difficult were not too hard for God.

My mind began to flood with scriptures. Scriptures that reminded me of God’s faithfulness to me in the past. Reminders on how He was with me in the flood, the fire, and the river. How He has led me through the desert and created streams for me to drink from. Passages that I have leaned on for hope when I was sure there was no way out from my present pressing circumstances. And an overarching theme began to emerge reminding me that God had indeed not forgotten me there on the floor that dreary morning. No. He has called me by name, redeemed me, and set me apart for a purpose. And He was not about to let me lay down in self-pity focusing on the physical things that tempt healing and reprieve, but never will satisfy like taking the hand of Jesus and standing in faith even when everything else around me appears to be crumbling.

I think we too often are like this man by the water (and myself that morning), waiting to be healed and slowly losing faith. We make all the excuses as to why we can’t ever be or achieve the life we hoped for. And yet, all the while the only thing required of us is to take that first step of faith, believing God will supply our legs with the ability to walk even when others have said we never will.

The movie clip scene ended with the paralytic man (now healed) asking Peter why it is so import for him to take up his mat. Peter replies, “Because you aren’t coming back here. Everything changes now”. We obviously don’t know if this was said to the man that day. But boy did God speak it over me. I loved that after asking me to stand up in faith and claim my healing, God clearly spoke over me that I am not coming back here.

He reminded me to pick up my pillow. To shake off the events of the morning and remember just how far His faithful hand has brought me. And in doing so, He comforted me with the promise that I was not going to sink back into the grasp of depression and fear, things He has already healed me from. I was not going to go back to days of laying in my bed wishing I was dead. And no matter how much the enemy might try to get me to assume that fetal position of grief, God had made a promise to me, and He intended to keep it. No. I was confident I was NOT going back there. And I never will.

Friend, what is keeping you from taking God’s hand, picking up your mat and walking out of the fear? Shame? Regret? Or your ever-present deafening life circumstances? What excuses are you making that keep your eyes on your own efforts, ability and human reasoning and keeps you from focusing on the Master’s unlimited resources? He IS the magnificent healer. For every aspect of our lives. He doesn’t intend to leave any stone unturned or any heartbreak unhealed. All He asks of us is to believe in Him and what He can do. He asks us to pick up our mat and walk. Simple enough. But it might just be the hardest and greatest thing we ever do.

Don’t you hear His loving voice calling you today?

Daughter, I am here. Bending down to meet you right where you are. And I am asking, do you want to be healed? Then pick up your mat and walk. Trust me, you aren’t coming back here.

One man was there who had been an invalid for thirty-eight years. When Jesus saw him lying there and knew that he had already been there a long time, he said to him, “Do you want to be healed?” The sick man answered him, “Sir, I have no one to put me into the pool when the water is stirred up, and while I am going another steps down before me.” Jesus said to him, “Get up, take up your bed, and walk.” And at once the man was healed, and he took up his bed and walked.

John 5:6-10 ESV

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