When we began this message series on “The End of Times/Revelation,” I had no idea what the weeks would be about, nor how the series would end. Honestly, whereas most message series are planned out months ahead of time, for some series, even years; this one was a “last-minute” insert because mentally and emotionally, I needed time between Lent/Easter and the difficult topics on social justice issues.

As we were studying the context, message, and meaning in Revelation, it became clear that we needed to end with the focus on “A new heaven and a new earth.”

In the words from Revelation 21, “God has moved into the neighborhood. They’re God’s people and God is their God. God will wipe every tear from their eye . . .” They are truly beautiful words.

“Behold, I make all things new!”

Those words can bring us comfort regardless of what situations in life we face!

As this message has been rolling around in my head for the past few weeks, it was ironic the timing of this devotion that came in my inbox earlier this week by Steve Garnaas-Holmes. It’s beautiful and transformational . . . please take a few moments, read and meditate on this message. Are we really ready to be healed? Do we really want to be made new?

What does answering “yes” look like?

            Knowing he had been there a long time,

           Jesus said to him, “Do you want to be made well?”

                           —John 5.6

“Perhaps it was a challenge:

Do you want to be healed,

or are you too used to it

to want to leave that life behind?

Have you grown fond of complaining,

accustomed to lying here,

unwilling to be changed?

      To which the answer may have been:

You can only obsess with what you want

for so long. After 38 years I am at peace with what is.

But, yes. I would rather be well.

      But maybe it was just an invitation,

      a way of saying, “May I?”

When I come to my prayers,

do I want to be transformed?

Do I realize I need to be healed?

Or do I think that’s Jesus’ job, to notice?

Do I know my sin makes me sick,

my fears and desires paralyze me?

How often do I ask for stuff

but forget to open myself

to being made new?

Yes, Beloved, yes.

I want to be made well.”