Missing The Miracle

I want you to imagine for a moment what your life would look like if you were physically disabled. If you were unable to move on your own. What kind of pain you would endure, not just physically, but mentally – counting each day as it passed by. Wishing for something better. Praying. Hoping.
And then imagine what it would be like to know that there is One person who could change all of that. In an instant. Heal the body that is sick. Touch a mind that is tortured. Put back together that which is  broken.
There was a man, many years ago, who had such an opportunity.   His story is told in the book of John in the Bible. It goes like this:

One of the men lying there had been sick for 38 years.Jesus saw him and knew that he had been sick for a very long time. So he asked him, “Do you want to be well?”The sick man answered, “Sir, there is no one to help me get into the water when it starts moving. I try to be the first one into the water. But when I try, someone else always goes in before I can.”Then Jesus said, “Stand up! Pick up your mat and walk.”Immediately the man was well. He picked up his mat and started walking. (John 5: 5-9) 

Pretty great story, right? Jesus healing this sick man who had waited for at least 38 years to be well. But that’s not the part of the story that is the most astounding to me.
Here it is: lean in closer…
He almost blew it! He almost missed it. Missed Jesus, his miracle, his answered prayer.
The Creator God, in human form, stood right in front of him and asked, “do you want to be well?” But instead of answering with an emphatic ‘YES!’ the man gives excuse about why he can’t do it on his own.
Isn’t that just like us? Giving excuses about why we can’t handle a situation on our own. Why we can’t heal our bodies and minds, or mend relationships in our own strength? I mean, it’s absurd, right?
Would the cancer patient in waiting room turn down a chance of a lifetime to be healed if there was a way?  If asked, “do you want to be well?” what do you think the answer would be?
When I read this story I was stopped by the question:

Have I missed Jesus?

Have there been times and situations where God’s hand had been extended to me, His power available to me, His grace offered to me… and I missed it. Because it didn’t come in the form I was expecting.
For the crippled man, that’s exactly how it came – in an untraditional way. The healing he sought was from the ‘magical water’, yet God wanted to heal him in a different way, a more miraculous way. But the man was so concerned with giving excuses that he almost missed The Answer standing right in front of him.
I don’t want to miss Jesus. And I don’t want to miss the miracle that He wants to extend to me because I’m giving excuses, or busy trying to fix things on my own.  When He asks, I want to say “yes” without hesitation. I want to take receive the miracle in whatever way He chooses to give it.