Forget Your Expectations

In John 5:1-15 Jesus is back in Jerusalem for a Jewish feast, most likely the Passover. At this point, Jesus was already famous among the people and a thorn in the sides of the religious leaders.  

Yet, when he first arrived in Jerusalem we don’t seem him at the temple or any other place of high esteem. Instead, he is at the pool called Bethesda. This isn’t a nice fancy pool either. It’s next to the sheep gate. 

Under the colonnades at the pool “lay a multitude of invalids—blind, lame, and paralyzed.” Out of the multitude of invalids, Jesus singled out the man who had been paralyzed for 38 years. Perhaps Jesus chose him because he had been there the longest, but we don’t know for sure. Then Jesus asks him if he wants to be healed, the man explains why he can’t be, and Jesus replies, “Get up, take up your bed, and walk.” And the man does!

I don’t know about you, but if I had been paralyzed for 38 years and someone told me to get up and walk I would think they’re crazy. I would probably protest and ask questions before slowly attempting to get up. However, this paralyzed man had such faith in Jesus’s words that he was instantly healed and got up. 

Although this man had been coming to the pool for a long time in hopes of being healed, he always left hopeless and remained paralyzed. For years he prayed for healing, and it came, but not in the way he expected. Rather than being healed by the pool, he was healed by the Messiah.

In his commentary on this story, Charles Spurgeon had an interesting perspective:

“A blindness had come over these people at the pool; there they were, and there was Christ, who could heal them, but not a single one of them sought him. Their eyes were fixed on the water, expecting it to be troubled; they were so taken up with their own chosen way that the true way was neglected.”

The multitude was so fixated on how they thought they should or could be healed that they neglected to see the Messiah standing in their midst with the power to miraculously heal them. 

Have you been praying for something, whether it be healing, provision, or guidance and expecting it to come in a certain way? I would challenge you to let go of those expectations, refocus on Christ alone, and see what happens.

Comments 8

  1. This was a great article, April, and so true! What a great perspective to keep our minds on today. Expectations have always been a thing for me that get me a little off course sometimes. I’m sharing this from my FB page.

  2. April, This was a great post! I do believe healing comes in many forms, and it isn’t always the way we expect. Yet, I can get so fixated on how I think it will arrive. I miss it. Thank you for redirecting my thought and sharing with us over at Grace & Truth Link-Up. Blessings, Maree

    1. Hi April,

      I have chosen your post to feature this week on Grace & Truth Christian Link-Up. Our only requirement is that you link back to our post. I think this won’t be a problem since I see you have done this before. Or maybe I am missing where you say you link up with Grace & Truth. Thank you for your encouraging post. Let me know if there is a problem.



      1. Post
  3. I’m here from Maree’s. This is such a good point: to look for and anticipate God’s way of answering rather than being fixated on how we think everything will work out. “Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think” (Ephesians 3:20).

  4. Excellent. Great reminder of truth.
    Love this line, “I would challenge you to let go of those expectations, refocus on Christ alone, and see what happens.” What a challenge. I wonder how many will actually accept this. It is a journey of faith to let go of what you know to step into the unknown with Jesus but one worth taking. He is a faithful and true guide but we need to learn how to follow. Our expectations are rooted in ‘self’ and will get in the way of faith. Better to be rid of them now than when it is too late.

    Homer Les

  5. Oh yes, how blind we can be when we think there is only one solution. We forget that God is so much bigger than our one idea, we can stare our miracle in the face and not see it. Great post, Many Thanks 8)

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