John 9:11 He replied, "The man they call Jesus made some mud and put it on my eyes. He told me to go to Siloam and wash. So I went and washed, and then I could see."
I’ve always loved this Gospel story of Jesus healing the blind man (John 9:1-12). When I was a child, I owned a small picture book with drawings of Jesus and His disciples. In my mind’s eye, I can still see the old picture of Jesus standing over the blind man, just after He healed him. The man is looking with amazement at his own hands which he has just seen for the very first time. Behind Jesus are all of His disciples, who are all awe struck about what their Master has just accomplished. It was a beautiful picture and it captivated my heart as a child.
Growing up in the world, I began to see that blindness is not just a physical ailment; it’s also a spiritual malaise among many people. As a young alcoholic, I could not see the real Jesus or even worse, I did not want to see Him. I wanted to live my life in my own way without Christ judging me for being selfish and sinful, misguided and lost. It was only when I reached rock bottom in the depths of darkness that I began to see Christ’s Light. My self-imposed blindness was penetrated by His love and mercy. He found me and healed; He restored my sight and led me by His astonishing light.
To make my healing effective, I had to do the same as the blind man in the Gospel story. I had to do what Jesus told me. In the blind man’s case, he had to go to the Pool of Siloam and wash the mud from his eyes. In my own case, I had to give up alcohol and trust in Christ completely. In both events, Christ’s healing prevailed.
Perhaps you are worrying about the future or you are carrying baggage from the past. Maybe your life has meandered for a while without purpose, direction, or meaning. Today I’d like to encourage you to honestly and simply give your heart to Jesus. He won’t break it; He will mend it. He’ll also lead you by a new light of faith, hope, and love in your life.
Questions for personal reflection
Have I been losing my way recently? Will I turn to Jesus and be restored to the light of His path for my life?
Prayer: Lord Jesus, sometimes we are blinded by our own ways, works, and words. We get distracted and misdirected by greed and ambition, insecurity and fear. Reach out to us and heal us of all that harms us. Beckon to us and call us back into Your Everlasting Light. In your Holy Name, we pray. Amen.
John Stuart is the pastor of Erin Presbyterian Church in Knoxville, Tennessee. If you would like to comment on today’s message, please send him an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Today’s image is another of John’s Epiphany drawings for church bulletins. It’s called “Fit for a King.” If you would like to view a larger version, please click on the following link: http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8361/8334144969_0f958571f3_b.jpg