I am reading “The Road Back to You” by Ian Morgan Cron and Suzanne Stabile. It is a book on understanding the Enneagram and discovering your type. (The Enneagram is an ancient tool to understand personality types and how each one interacts with the world.) I just finished reading about Type 2 – the Helper. The 2’s sense and meet needs all around them but fail to acknowledge their own need for fear of rejection. Sometimes they are not even cognizant of their needs.
There is Someone attentive to our needs even when we don’t acknowledge them, shove them down or excuse them away. The man at the pool of Bethesda was one such man.
Afterward Jesus returned to Jerusalem for one of the Jewish holy days. Inside the city, near the Sheep Gate, was the pool of Bethesda, with five covered porches. Crowds of sick people—blind, lame, or paralyzed—lay on the porches. One of the men lying there had been sick for thirty-eight years. When Jesus saw him and knew he had been ill for a long time, he asked him, “Would you like to get well?” “I can’t, sir,” the sick man said, “for I have no one to put me into the pool when the water bubbles up. Someone else always gets there ahead of me.” Jesus told him, “Stand up, pick up your mat, and walk!” Instantly, the man was healed!John 5:1-9
Thirty-eight years this man lay by the pool waiting to go in and be healed. He wasn’t crying out to Jesus for help; as a matter of fact, he didn’t even know who Jesus was. But Jesus saw him and he knew. He knew what he needed and didn’t hesitate to approach the man.
Jesus’ interaction here has always caused me to pause. Of all the people there — and there were crowds of people — why this man? What drew Jesus to him? I don’t know, but I take comfort in knowing that Jesus sees me and knows. He knows my limitations and my desires; he knows my level of readiness for his intervention. He sees me even when I feel lost in the crowd and unable to help myself.
He is El-roi – the God who sees me! The crowd isn’t hiding you. He hears the cries of your heart and is moving to help. Even if you don’t know what you need or how to ask.