I do have to praise God because it is NOTHING like it used to be... Before, I couldn't leave the house or do anything without a drink and/or a pill... Now when I do something I just have to pray... Little by little and from glory to glory, FOR HIS GLORY!
Thank You Lord! !
Do You Want to Get Well?
“Pick up your mat and walk.”
John 5:11 (NIV)
Are you familiar with the story of the man on the mat found in the ? As the story opens, we find Jesus entering Jerusalem after a tiring journey. His Father led Him to a dirty, smelly pool of water. Every day the lame, weak, and sick gathered at this pool, believing an angel would come down, touch the water, and fill it with healing powers. Whoever entered the pool first received instant healing. As Jesus wandered through the crowd, God drew his eyes to an invalid lying on a mat.
Jesus looked deep into his soul and asked, “Do you want to get well?”
“Sir,” the invalid replied, “I have no one to help me into the pool when the water is stirred. While I am trying to get in, someone else goes down ahead of me.”
Have you ever felt like this invalid? Are you paralyzed by fear, despair, isolation, or self-pity? Do you believe you are the victim of unfortunate circumstances?
I lived like that invalid for over a decade. In 1986 at age 21, I was raped by a masked stranger hiding in my apartment. Before that day, I loved my life. I had just completed four years of college and graduated with honors. I had dated and become engaged to a wonderful man. I had even been voted a homecoming princess and had an amazing job waiting for me. After that day, worldly praise and blessings meant nothing. My attacker’s vile and cruel act shattered my hopes and my dreams.
After that I lived in a prison of fear and despair. Then I encountered Christ in this gospel story. The words Jesus spoke to the crippled man pierced my soul. I realized that I was the man on the mat. I enjoyed being the victim. I had become accustomed to my place of sorrow. Worse, I was comfortable there.
I came to know the truth of Hebrews 4:12: “For the Word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.” spoke personally to me. I knew I needed to take a first step.
I surrendered my fear, my pity, and my grief, and opened my heart to God’s Word. I learned He had a plan for my life and a purpose for my pain. I knew I would never see it until I had the courage to get up and walk.
If you find yourself on a mat, will you trust me and open God’s Word? God will speak into your heart promises of hope and healing. However, before you can take that step off your mat, you must surrender your fear, self-pity, and despair. Sweet friend, God is waiting. Will you take the first step?