The Pool Prayer








"Now there is in Jerusalem by the Sheep Gate a pool, in Hebrew called Beth-zatha, which has five porticoes. In these lay a multitude of invalids, blind, lame, paralyzed. One man was there, who had been ill for thirty-eight years. When Jesus saw him and knew that he had been lying there a long time, he said to him, 'Do you want to be healed?' The sick man answered him, 'Sir, I have no man to put me into the pool when the water is troubled, and while I am going another steps down before me.' Jesus said to him, 'Rise, take up your pallet, and walk.' And at once the man was healed, and he took up his pallet and walked." (1)

Beth-zatha

The placid pool steams with grace;
A broken form -- I crouch near it.
The stilled waters reflect a face --
A faint notion of the Spirit.

My heart rate slows as I inhale
The steam deeply into my soul;
My heart yields -- Mercy will prevail
Over my wounds -- I will be whole!

I timidly stretch out my arm
To touch the sacred pool's sheen:
My flesh quivers -- all cold and warm;
My soul is touched by Hand Unseen.

My heart, long-paralyzed with pain,
Now rises to the Master's call.
By His mercy, love will sustain
New life raised from the old man's pall.

Approach the pool without fear;
For hearts who will it, healing's near.



(c) Paul Buis, 2002

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1. John 5:2-8