Many persons are not ready to be liberated. Though they may not admit it they are in love with their chains. John tells about the man who sat beside the healing pool and who had been crippled for 38 years. Jesus asked him: “Do you want to be healed?” (Jn 5). We can surmise that Jesus is asking: Do you want to be well, i.e., free of your affliction? Do you really want this? And can you believe in me to do the healing? At that point the man was in effect being asked to put himself into the hands of God. This he did by rising from the ground at Jesus’ command.
Again and again Jesus asks us, too, if we really want to be liberated, whether we are serious. Only then will he ask about our faith in his power to set us free. Though faith is certainly necessary it cannot take the place of wanting to move in the first place, to be willing to let go of our misery.
Lord, I will not give you excuses as did the man by the healing pool. I want to become the whole and mature human being and disciple you want me to be. Strengthen me so that I can stand up at your bidding and by your power.