When Jesus saw him lying there and knew that he had already been there a long time, he said to him, “Do you want to be healed?”(John 5:6)
This is a crucial question.
It's one we don't ask enough.
It is one that is being asked of you and I right now.
Too much of our viewpoint of spiritual growth has been framed by mechanisms - programs and procedures that, if done correctly, would lead to a completely formed disciple. The issue is that the mechanisms fail: tons of Biblical knowledge create incredible jerks with an intense knowledge of chapter and verse. Extensive small group involvement give us all the social interaction skills that help people to like us, but doesn't necessarily lead to the accountability and challenge we desperately need.
In the sea of mechanisms, Jesus asks a question from a very different place: Do you want to be well?
Mechanisms for spiritual growth are only good if they arise out of our prayerful and honest consideration of where we must travel in order to be transformed from our us-likeness into Christ-likeness.
This is a question of vision - what is God's vision for who you were meant to be? What is the area where we are in desperate need of renovation, surrender, softening, and eventually a sense of hope?
Do you want to be well?
Jesus removes the excuses (John 5:8) and says, "Get up and walk."
Do you want to be well? Let me show you the path, the reality, that will lead you from being stuck in the you to being consumed by Me.
The reality that lies behind it all, screaming to the surface, is the fact that Jesus wants us to be well.
Do we know what "well" really looks like?