Reflecting on the Gospel of John [Jn 5:1-3,5-16]

“NO man is an island,” John Dunne said. No one can live independent of anyone else. That’s why we have ears because we need to listen to other, we have eyes because we need to look at others, we have mouth because we need to talk to others, we have nose, because we need to smell the aroma of the society where we live in, we have hands to touch other people’s lives, and we have feet to go and reach out to others.

Our gospel today is a concrete testimony of this dependency. The man has been sick for 38 years, and he was there with all the other sick people. But because he could hardly move, he couldn’t get to pool ahead of the others, to be cured. He just badly needs help from the outside. And yes, he really needs help. Interestingly Jesus comes into the scene, sensing that this long-time-sick person is really needing help, and Jesus can readily offer  that help, even more. But lo, Jesus doesn’t want to intrude one’s freedom and person. So he first asked the man, “Do you want to be well again?” He reasoned out, that he’s been trying all those years to be cured, but he thought he could only do it on his own, and no one could help him, so he failed many times.

But today Jesus, helps him get up. For the sick man, NO ONE before offered to help him, but then there is SOMEONE who comes along and heals him.  So let’s only acknowledge before Jesus our helplessness and disabilities in many areas in our lives, then ask him to cure us…to let us immerse into the refreshing pool of his mercy, love, care and bounty.

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