How do we view the things that happen in our life and the lives of others? Do we view them as curses with or without reason? Or do we understand the blessing behind it in alignment with God’s plan for our lives and the lives of others?
As He passed by, He saw a man blind from birth. 2 And His disciples asked Him, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he would be born blind?” 3 Jesus answered, “It was neither that this man sinned, nor his parents; but it was so that the works of God might be displayed in him. 4 We must work the works of Him who sent Me as long as it is day; night is coming when no one can work. 5 While I am in the world, I am the Light of the world.”
In the day that Jesus roamed the earth, it was understood by many that afflictions were a result of sinfulness. Financial disparity, physical sickness, relational turmoil were all viewed as results of a life full of sin. Here, however, is a man that has been blind since birth. If he wasn’t born yet, how could he have sinned to receive the consequence of that sin. Also, it would be quite unfair for the man to be blind as a result of his parents’ sins, wouldn’t it? This is the reason behind their questioning. Verse 3 is the key to not only this story, but to our lives and our interactions with others.
You see, as creations of the creator, we are all here for a purpose: to serve God in the unique way He designed us to. As Jesus is explaining (and we will see as the story progresses) this man’s blindness is not a result of any sin or even punishment upon the man, but for a specific purpose to glorify God. Now, those of us who are reading this can obviously see. We might see blindness as a cruel joke of God. It is very difficult to see someone who is born with a disability as being blessed. This is because (as we have been talking about throughout the book of John) we tend to take things on the surface. We look at the physical, fleshly, earthly aspect and shake our heads in bewilderment and fists in anger at God. “Why would a supposed loving God do such a thing?”
You know how they say, “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure?” We can use the same concept here biblically, “one man’s curse is another man’s blessing.” Just because we aren’t happy with the way things are going doesn’t mean they aren’t going the way they are supposed to. Just because we disagree with God’s plan doesn’t mean He is wrong. It is all to glorify God. This is a hard pill to swallow. We see death, destruction, rape, murder, incest, the list goes on.
It’s not about the physical, folks, its about the spiritual. I have met people who have endured some of the worst tragedies of earthly life and because of God are some of the happiest people I have ever met. They are now helping others through the same messes they encountered. This is exactly why Jesus said what He did in verses 4 and 5. A time is coming when we can no longer help others. A time is coming when the world will turn darkest before He shines. Some may say that time is now, but friend, that is a cop out to not act and bless others with the blessings God has given you.
What has God blessed you with that can be used to do His work? Everyone has one, you just have to recognize it and use it for His glory, not your own. My wife wears a shirt from Servants’ Home Helps Ministry that says, “Where is God in the disaster? In the Recovery.”
Are you part of the disaster or part of the recovery?