John chapter 9 begins by saying that Jesus saw a man blind from birth. The disciples make the assumption of their day when they ask whose sin caused the blindness. After all, the lack of vision must have been caused by someone sinning, right?
We’re not told this man asked for healing. We don’t know if he was making a spectacle of himself in order to attract more attention or if he was just sitting as he always sat, calling out for alms. We don’t know if he even knew Jesus was near him. We do know that he knew the one who had healed him was Jesus. John tells us that after he left Jesus to wash in the Pool of Siloam as Jesus instructed, he went home. And when friends and neighbors asked him how he could see again he said, “The man they call Jesus made some mud and put it on my eyes.”
We don’t know the level of this man’s faith. I would guess he wasn’t overwhelmed with a desire for Jesus prior to the healing simply because his statement puts some distance between himself and the man who had healed him. He doesn’t say, “Jesus healed me”, but instead “The man they call Jesus.” But regardless of his feelings, he obeyed. He went to the specific place Jesus mentioned to wash the mud from his eyes.
We do know he was healed, and, in his sight, he gained freedom from the oppressive disease that had plagued him all his life. A freedom that would soon cause him great trouble with the Pharisees because they didn’t want to believe the miracle.
But what I find significant is that Jesus tells us at the beginning of the story that this man’s blindness was “so that the works of God might be displayed in him.” What this man and his parents had probably considered a tragedy, a burden, perhaps even a curse on his life — was meant to be a blessing.
Have you ever thought of that in regards to whatever disease or tragedy plagues you? It’s a different perspective, but then the Lord tells us through Isaiah, “My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,”
declares the Lord. “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts” (Isaiah 55:8-9).
Even if the thing we’re struggling with is clearly our own fault, Paul tells us in Romans 8:28 that God can work all things together for good for those that love God. Really, this is a trust and obedience issue. If you trust God is good and you strive to obey Him, then you can have freedom from fear and worry and confusion even in the midst of whatever is happening around you.
Just remember: God has a plan to display His works in you.
Does that encourage you?
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