I know a couple people who just force me to ask the question: What do you really want out of life? You may know what I’m talking about if you know anyone like this. People who seem depressed, ill, lonely or just discouraged. Life has thrown them some lemons and they have made some pretty bitter lemonade as a result. Living their lives in such a state of melancholy for so long, one begins to wonder if they really want anything to change. At some point, do these individuals just accept this despair as a way of life?
It is with these bleak people that we can truly comprehend the divided minds of a fallen culture. As much as outsiders may think that these souls want change, it could simply be that they have developed a comfort their status quo. Life is what it is and that is it.
“The sick man said, "Sir, when the water is stirred, I don't have anybody to put me in the pool. By the time I get there, somebody else is already in." – NIV
I think about the invalid hanging out by the pool in the book of John. When the water stirs, no one helps him in the pool. Then I think, man, it has been thirty eight years of this! No one to help? Really? Surely tired of being an invalid, this man probably feared the dramatic change in his life that a miraculous healing would bring. I mean, change is change, and even if it is for the better…it is still intense. This man’s hesitation to accept help forced Jesus to beg the question: “Are you really ready for what will happen to you when you’ve really encountered Me?”
How much do we identify with this man? We say that we want to be delivered of our sins, and yet, we continue to look for ways to be tempted by them. We want our prayers answered, but wonder if people will still give us the attention and sympathy when they are. We want to change, we don’t want to change. Anyway you look at it, we are divided souls.
When Jesus asks, “Do you want to get well”, I suppose this question is not as simple as it sounds. If we decide that we really want to know Him, we must first know that nothing will ever be the same again.