Do you ever disobey the rule, for the good of the world, the good of your own morals? Maybe there were certain restrictions put in place, and you went against them because you felt in your gut that something needed to change. Maybe you desperately want to speak about your religious faith within a classroom that is in the public board, that is focussing on moral issues. Yet, you can't and have to find an alternative way to sneak it in. There are some areas in our lives where it feels necessary to break the rules, to push until we can find good, lasting results. Through God, we need to obey the law, and we also need to do the best we can to take a stand in our faith, rising up to the challenges imposed by the modern world. Do you ever feel that guidance by the Holy Spirit, inspiring you to take a stand, make a change?
Today's Gospel states: 'After this there was a feast of the Jews, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. Now there is in Jerusalem by the Sheep Gate a pool, in Hebrew called Beth-za'tha, which has five porticoes. In these lay a multitude of invalids, blind, lame, paralyzed. One man was there, who had been ill for thirty-eight years. When Jesus saw him and knew that he had been lying there a long time, he said to him, "Do you want to be healed?" The sick man answered him, "Sir, I have no man to put me into the pool when the water is troubled, and while I am going another steps down before me." Jesus said to him, "Rise, take up your pallet, and walk." And at once the man was healed, and he took up his pallet and walked. Now that day was the sabbath. So the Jews said to the man who was cured, "It is the sabbath, it is not lawful for you to carry your pallet." But he answered them, "The man who healed me said to me, `Take up your pallet, and walk.'" They asked him, "Who is the man who said to you, `Take up your pallet, and walk'?" Now the man who had been healed did not know who it was, for Jesus had withdrawn, as there was a crowd in the place. Afterward, Jesus found him in the temple, and said to him, "See, you are well! Sin no more, that nothing worse befall you." The man went away and told the Jews that it was Jesus who had healed him. And this was why the Jews persecuted Jesus, because he did this on the sabbath' (John 5:1-16).
Today's reading talks about the healing of the sick man. He has faith, and Jesus helps him to walk again because of it. Think about how great a result that would be, how changed you would feel for life. It would be an eye-opener. The man takes a stand, and shows his great faith, and in turn is rewarded. Jesus takes a stand against the custom rules of the people, and decides that it is better to help change a man for life than to obey the rules. Sometimes, we need to push past ordinary binds that the world holds on us, in order to rise up in faith, as Jesus does, taking up the cross. How can you take a stand in your life? Take some time to pray and ask God to help you rise up and be courageous in your faith.
Today we pray:
Thank You for helping me to see You working in my life. Guide me to take steps that stand up to our modern society, and be a true disciple for Your will to the world.
I pray in Your most holy name, Amen.