Do you want to be healed? — Sunday of the Paralytic

In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, One God, Amen.

Christ is risen!

We all need healing.  You and I have been sat by our own pool waiting for the angel of the Lord to descend into it that we might enter the waters and be healed.  Our maladies may differ—we may be blind to the suffering of our neighbours, lame and unable to stand with the persecuted and paralysed when we see injustice, unable to be the human beings we were called to be.  I, in this state, am a poor imitation of a human being.

And the Lord comes.  The Lord walks by and we do not even recognise him, just a man in a crowd.  He comes to us and does not go through the usual social niceties, no greeting nor enquiring after us.  The Lord says to you, and he says to me, “Do you want to be healed?”  And I am tempted to reply, “What a stupid question!  Can’t you see me here suffering?”  But his is an important question, a vital question: “Do you want to be healed?”  Because, to be healed means I must take responsibility for myself.  I must get up from self-pity and work for my own salvation.  If I am healed I must not rely on the prayers of others—I must pray.  I must not be a dead end for the Holy Spirit but be a channel for the Holy Spirit to flow through me to others.

Do you want to be healed?  Really want it?  Or are you happy where you are, others taking responsibility for you?  Am I?  Do we want to be healed?

The Lord heals.  The Lord has offered this day to heal you in spirit that you may rise and take up your own pallet.  Here, at this Liturgy, we receive the Word of God who is life giving.  We, each one of us, has the opportunity to take responsibility for ourselves and become the human beings we were created to be.

Do you want to be healed?

Christ is risen!

That we may glorify and honour Christ who offers us healing continually together with his unoriginated Father and All-Holy Spirit.  Amen.