Now there is in Jerusalem by the Sheep Gate a pool, which is called in Hebrew, Bethesda, having five porches. In these lay a great multitude of sick people, blind, lame, paralyzed, waiting for the moving of the water. For an angel went down at a certain time into the pool and stirred up the water; then whoever stepped in first, after the stirring of the water was made well of whatever disease he had. Now a certain man was there who had an infirmity thirty-eight years. When Jesus saw him lying there, and knew that he already had been in that condition a long time, He said to him, “Do you want to be made well?”
The sick man answered Him, “Sir, I have no man to put me into the pool when the water is stirred up, but while I am coming, another steps down before me.”
Jesus said to him, “Rise, take up your bed and walk.”
During this time, Jesus was still making His way around the cities teaching and healing those around Him. There was great talk about Jesus but some still didn’t know who He was or what He was capable of. Some people still kept their customs, like this one, because they hadn’t been approached by this man named Jesus. They didn’t know yet how their lives could be changed by the encounter of one man. So they waded in their waiting. They knew there would be One to come and save them from their infirmities but in the meantime, they just stuck to what they knew. They waited around for an angel to come at a certain time, whenever that time may be, and then when the time was right those that could would quickly get in the water, wade around in it, until they received their healing.
The Lord is saying today, “You don’t have to wade any longer.”
Had this man known who Jesus was, He would’ve simply asked Him for healing instead. But we, as believers, know who this man is. Yet some of us are still wading around in our waiting. We’re trudging in what we’re accustomed to while we wait on the One who will save us once and for all. But Jesus has already done that on the cross. We have the upper-hand compared to those that were living in Jesus’ time period. Christ’s death, burial, and resurrection gave us the power and authority to take what we need from Him at all times. The question is:
“Do you want to be made well?”
We’re all waiting on something: waiting on that promotion, waiting on that degree, waiting on that marriage, waiting on that ministry, waiting on that vacation. But some of us live our lives in wading instead of waiting on the Lord. We trudge through life instead of anticipating the Lord to arrive. We trudge through, trying to make things happen, instead of acknowledging the Holy Spirit that is in us and ready to meet our every need.
The Lord says “No more wading. Wait on Me, and walk.”
Merriam-Webster defines the word wait as staying in place in expectation. We should live our lives waiting for God to show up at any moment. He could show up at your workplace at any moment and give you that promotion. He could show up at your school at any moment with a scholarship so you can obtain your degree. He could show up at any moment with the man you’ve been praying for. Expect His presence in order to receive what you need. Wait for Him instead of wading in a situation hoping that it will change.
To wait also means to serve. While you’re expecting God to show up in your situation, serve Him. Your time, gifts, and talents are precious to Him. Everyday you should be asking the Lord, “How may I serve you?” It is an honor to serve a God that is willing to love you unconditionally and meet your every need. Our lives should be a living sacrifice to Him in exchange for everything He’s done for us. And though we can never repay Him, we should give Him our all because He’s worthy of it.
So, here are some things you should do while you wait:
- Have Faith: I’ve mentioned this before and I’ll keep mentioning this, everything in the Kingdom takes faith. Prayer takes faith, praise and worship takes faith, ministry takes faith, healing takes faith; everything that comes from God begins with faith. Faith is our confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see. It takes faith to know that though you can’t physically see God walking in your life changing things around you, in the spirit-realm He’s shifting the atmosphere and working things together for your good. Faith is confidence that God will do what He says He will do, even if you don’t have all the details. You don’t need all the details, you just need the faith of a mustard seed.
- Have Hope: You may believe that faith and hope are synonymous but they’re actually not. Remember: faith is confidence in God. While hope is a joyful anticipation of God’s arrival. Hope partners with faith so that after you are confident in God you can wait for Him to move in your situation. Notice I said wait for Him. We use hope loosely when we say ‘I hope this happens’ or ‘I hope that I get this,’ but Christ is called our hope of glory. When we hope for something, we’re really anticipating God to show up where we are. We’re expecting Him to appear at any moment and turn things around for our good and for His glory. Hope in the Lord and not in the object.
- Wait it Out: This may seem like the hardest part but it actually can become the easiest. Just like we hope for the Lord, we also wait for Him. The good news is we know He’s coming because His word promises the things He’ll do for us. The other good news is we don’t know when He’s coming so we can always expect Him to do exceedingly and abundantly above all that we ask or think because it’s always going to be a surprise. In the meantime, we wait or serve Him. We get productive and do the things He’s asked of us, instead of watching the clock wondering when He’s going to show up. If it ever feels like God is taking too long, you’re not busy enough. You should be about your Father’s business so much that you almost forget about the thing you prayed for. Instead you’ll just be enjoying His presence and the purpose He’s called you to.
I’m alongside you in this journey. There are things that I’ve been praying to God for YEARS for and they still haven’t come to pass. But I refuse to lose my faith and hope in Him. He is a great God, and I refuse to stop believing in Him just because my order hasn’t arrived. He’s faithful and just, and He knows exactly what I need when I need it. I pray that as we grow with the Lord we continue to expand our faith. I pray that we continue to read His word to prove to ourselves over and over again how trustworthy He is. I pray that we act as children, joyful anticipating God’s arrival in our lives because He’s already here. He’s just preparing us for His release.