The 2000 MLB season was one that Yankees fans will never forget. Not only were the Bronx Bombers World Series Champions, but four time All Star Chuck Knoblauch had the worst set back of his career. Arguably worse than any physical ailment a player could endure, Knoblauch suffered with what is commonly known as the "yips." Unsure of its cause, this mental issue disables players from making short simple throws. In the case of the Yankee second baseman, Knoblauch couldn't make the 45 foot throw to first base. The pinnacle of this particular case was when Knoblauch made three throwing errors in the first six innings against the Red Sox which led to him finishing the season in left field. Knoblauch is not the only player to have struggled with the "yips." In fact, entire books have been written on the mental block and how players can recover. Depending on the power of the stronghold, the "yips" have been known to end careers and ruin reputations.
As we read in John 5:1-13, there was a man who had been sick for 38 years. We are unsure of what his sickness was, but we can assume that the man was paralyzed because he needed someone to put him into the water to be healed. In verse six, the author says that "Jesus knew he had already been there a long time." (There was a large number of the sick waiting for moving water, legend had it that the first one in recovered from whatever ailment he had.) Then Jesus said, "Do you want to get well?"
What seemed to be an obvious answer, resulted in hopelessness. "Sir," the sick man answered, "I don't have a man to put me into the pool when the water is stirred up, but while I'm coming, someone goes down ahead of me." This man believed that his circumstances were too great for any healing. Although he didn't say "no," his actions spoke louder than words. Weather it is a bad case of the "yips," or any other circumstances, often times we believe that our circumstances are too much to be healed from and grow to be content with the issue at hand. Like the man who had been at the pool for 38 years, we begin to let our circumstances define us.
Jesus responded, "Get up, pick up your mat and walk." With that, the man was healed. When Jesus said this, he was saying, "You are not defined by your circumstances, you don't have to stay in this place forever." The question Jesus has for you is this, "do you want to get well?" The loneliness of the sick man, Knoblauch, and many more, is great. But it is nothing compared to the power of Jesus Christ.
Jesus tells us that we can give him our burdens and he will take them. There is freedom found in his name. No matter how great of a burden we are carrying, Jesus is standing with open arms asking "do you want to get well?"
Prayer: Lord, I want to get well. May you take the lies of the world that tell me "I Can't." I know that you are greater than all circumstances, so I give mine to you now. Thank you Jesus for carrying my burdens and allowing me to pick up my mat and walk. In Jesus name, Amen.