Psalm 146:6-9 (NIV)

John 5:1-15 (NIV)

God has a heart for hurting and broken people.  We see that in Psalm 146 and we see it in Jesus’ healing of the crippled man.

And when we look at Jesus’ ministry, we find that he encounters people and starts with the needs that they have as a bridge to a relationship and to sharing the Good News of the Gospel.  Notice the humility he demonstrates with the man who could not walk for 38 years.  He heals him and doesn’t even tell him who he is.  No sermon, there’s no,  “Do you know who I am?” kind of thing. He just asks him, “Do you want to be well?”  The man apparently does but can’t get into the healing pool in time to be made well.  Jesus heals him and then slips away to go somewhere else.

Jesus heals this man physically and helps him at the point the man can understand.  Next they meet again and it’s at this second encounter that Jesus challenges him to invest in his spiritual health and wellbeing. Jesus had already established a relationship with him before getting to spiritual reality.

I believe this is good model for us to follow.  Build and establish relationships wherever you can.  Then once you have authentically and genuinely connected with someone then begin to share the Good News of Jesus at the right time, in the right way, in the right spirit.

How can you build a relationship today and love others with the love with which God has so loved you in Jesus Christ?