#1: I couldn’t decide

Now in Jerusalem by the Sheep Gate there is a pool, called in Hebrew Beth-zatha, which has five porticoes. In these lay many invalids—blind, lame, and paralyzed. One man was there who had been ill for thirty-eight years. When Jesus saw him lying there and knew that he had been there a long time, he said to him, “Do you want to be made well?” 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 making my way, someone else steps down ahead of me.” Jesus said to him, “Stand up, take your mat and walk.” At once the man was made well, and he took up his mat and began to walk. (John 5:2-9a)

I put a silver spoon from Richmond
in a teapot full of white sand
I lit a candle for my boundless soul
I knocked boldly on the heavy wooden door and waited
Someone used her finger to put the cross on my forehead
and I looked at the palm of her hand while she did
I drank wine from a glass where others had drunk before me
I broke off a piece of gluten free bread
as the person who gave it said this is the body
I closed my eyes and heard Jerusalem
I couldn’t decide if I wanted to be broken or whole
I spoke beautiful mysterious words aloud
in a room full of strangers
I sang songs I didn’t know
I looked back when leaving,
but I didn’t turn into a pillar of salt
I looked back and saw warmth and light and beauty. Ω

Reflect: Imagine yourself in the story. You are lying on your mat being warmed by the sun. You’ve been there for so long you can barely remember a different life. Now imagine Jesus coming to you and asking, “Do you want to be made whole?” What will you say to him? What paralyses you? What is holding you back?

#Lent2020 © Sanctuary, 2020.


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