Tuesday of the Fourth Week of Lent

posted in: Homilies, Lent | 0

Today’s readings

“Do you want to be well?”

That had to be a jarring question to the man at the waters of Bethesda. I wonder if he was thinking, “Of course I want to be well! Why do you think I’ve been lying here so long?” But it’s an important question for him to answer: Jesus can’t heal someone who has become entrenched in his or her own illness to the point that they just accept it. But he tells Jesus his plight, and accepts the command to rise and walk, and with that he is healed.

In these Lenten days, the Elect among us – those preparing for the Easter Sacraments of initiation – are lying at the waters of Bethesda. Those waters are the waters of Baptism, which will be stirred up at the Easter Vigil. They will be taken down to the waters by their sponsors, and they will be baptized into the faith. What a glorious night that will be!

In these Lenten days, we find ourselves lying at the waters of our own Bethesda, too (Bethesda means “House of Mercy). We find ourselves sick with sin, and needing the waters of Baptism to be stirred up in our own lives so that we can be made well, so that we can rise and walk. We are more than half way through Lent, and so it is time that we reflect on our sin and answer Jesus’ question, “Do you want to be well?” Because he stands ready to stir up the waters and command us to rise and walk. This is the time for a good Lenten confession if we haven’t made one yet. This Sunday we will have 15 priests to hear confessions. Those waters will be plenty stirred up.

So, do you want to be well?