As we continue our Paschal journey, we commemorate on the Fourth Sunday of Pascha the Sunday of the Paralytic. In the Gospel according to John chapter 5, Christ journeys up to Jerusalem where He encounters an ill man unable to place himself into the healing pool. This is by no means an accidental encounter or mere coincidence, but a great manifestation of God’s mercy. The paralytic was there, not for a few hours, days or even weeks, but for 38 years! Finally, after waiting there for nearly four decades, Christ asks him, “Do you want to be healed?” At first glance, it seems ridiculous to ask such a question to someone who has been suffering for so long. I do not think anybody would fault the paralytic if he responded to this question by saying something like, “What do you think!?” But he doesn’t respond in this way. His response is a response from a man of great patience and perseverance. The Lord then commands the man to “Rise, take up your pallet and walk.” Let us too, continue through life with such patience and perseverance, let us turn to our Lord and be healed and transformed by His mercy and grace.
“I am grievously paralyzed in a multitude of sins and wrongful deeds. As You raised up the paralytic of old, also raise up my soul by Your divine guidance, that I may cry out, "Glory to Your Power O Compassionate Christ."
-Kontakion, Sunday of the Paralytic