Remember John 5:1-3.5-16
There was a Jewish festival, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. ….were crowds of sick people – blind, lame, paralysed.
One man there had an for thirty-eight years, and when Jesus saw him lying there and knew he had been in this condition for a long time, said to him,
‘Get up, pick up your sleeping-mat and walk’.
The man was cured at once, and he picked up his mat and walked away.
After a while Jesus met him in the Temple and said,
‘Now you are well again, be sure not to sin any more.
Reflect Our own Jerusalem
For Jesus, Jerusalem was a special place of God’s presence among his chosen people, he found himself at home there.
It also included painful memories for Jesus –
as it was for many previous prophets like Jeremiah
it was a place of struggle and death.
For Jesus it would also be the place of death,
but also resurrection and new hope.
We can speak of our own personal ‘Jerusalem’, our internal one
These should be holy places
where we discover victory and resurrection,
and freedom over oppression,
Where we recognize God’s presence, strength and loving support.
Like for Jesus we might also find pain, rejection and betrayal there
where other people prejudge us, gossip about us,
where others speak ignorantly to us, ignore us, oppress us, reject us
or destroy our hopes.
We need to work so that with God’s help we build a new Temple fit for our God
Story A striking taxi journey
…Andy W, a taxi driver, recently shared this story. ‘I was called to a house to pick up a woman. A small woman in her 90’s stood before me on the path with a little suitcase. I took her case, she took my arm and we walked slowly toward the car. When we got in, she gave me an address, and asked, if I would her drive through town?’ ‘It’s not the shortest way.‘ I answered quickly. But you’re payin so your choice!
‘I’m in no hurry. I’m on my way to a hospice for the very sick. The doctor says I don’t have very long.‘
For the next 50 minutes, we drove through the city. She pointed out to me the building where she had once worked as a lift operator for 10 years. We drove by a house where she and her husband had lived for forty years and we passed very slowly by the site of an old dance hall where she had gone dancing as a girl.
We arrived at the hospice. ‘How much do I owe you?‘ she asked, reaching into her purse. ‘Nothin,‘ I said. Almost without thinking, I gave her a hug. (previrus days rules) Carried her bag from the car.
She held onto me tightly.
‘You gave an old woman a final moment of joy,’ ‘Thank you.’
She squeezed my hand, as I walked off towards my taxi. Behind me, I heard a door shut, I looked back and she was gone inside. I wiped away an escaping tear and headed home.
help me to be like you
Keep us safe in our times of need.
Keep us caring for others in their need;
and when we show care for each other,
may we recognize you in our actions. Amen
Lead, kindly light, amid the encircling gloom,
Lead thou me on;
The night is dark, and I am far from home;
Lead thou me on;
Keep thou my feet; I do not ask to see
The distant scene: one step enough for me.
I was not ever thus, nor prayed that thou
Shouldst lead me on;
I loved to choose, and see my path; but now
Lead thou me on.
I loved the garish day, and, spite of fears,
Pride ruled my will: remember not past years.
by John H Newman 1801-90)