Tuesday of the Fourth Week of Lent
(Ezequiel 47:1-9.12; John 5:1-16)
Residents of Austin, Texas, refresh themselves in Barton Springs Pool near the center of town. The pool is fed by an underground spring which keeps the water at a cool but stable seventy degrees. Barton Springs Pool is a place of rejuvenation that is reminiscent of the healing waters in both readings today.
The prophet Ezekiel describes a symbolic river springing from the Temple to give life wherever it flows. The medicinal plants it irrigates will heal the people of the sin that they have contracted. The gospel mentions a pool in the area of the same Temple. However, its water is eclipsed by Jesus himself who is the eternal fount of life. Jesus’ healing of the hapless paralytic comprises one of the wonders in the gospel meant to foster belief among the people.
Although we may resent being compared to the paralytic, we need the Lord every bit as much as he. We are incapable of healing ourselves. We need Jesus to direct us to rise from our sinfulness, to take hold of our lives, and to walk in his light.