“His disciples asked him, ‘Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?’ ‘Neither this man nor his parents sinned,’ said Jesus, ‘but this happened so that the works of God might be displayed in him.’” (John 9:2-3 NIV)
As Jesus and his school-in-motion moved through town, they came upon a man who’d been blind since birth. The apostles started a prosecution-of-blame: “Maybe he’s blind because he sinned? Maybe he’s blind because of something his parents did?”
Eugene Peterson suggests that Jesus’ response could be paraphrased, “You’re asking the wrong question. You’re looking for someone to blame. There is no such cause-effect here. Look instead for what God can do” (John 9:3-4 MSG).
Instead of finding someone to blame for your difficult situation, look instead for what God can do through you and for you!
Look to what God can do through his power, strength, and majesty. Get your eyes off the things below and look to what God can do right now through you because the “night is coming,” when you’ll no longer be able to work (John 9:4 NIV).
We don’t have time to figure it all out. Instead of asking, “Why me?” we need to ask, “What do you want me to do in this situation, Lord?”
The apostle Paul says, “We always carry the death of Jesus in our body, so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body” (2 Corinthians 4:10 HCSB). In other words, we carry Jesus’ death in our bodies, and then God resurrects the life of Jesus within us.
God uses our tragedies like an involuntary surgery that causes fear and even greater pain, but on the other side we are stronger, on the way to recovery from our disease of faithlessness.
And even though it may be difficult to see how God can do that or to even see God at work, we grow more confident that he is moving us toward a peaceful future (Romans 8:28; Jeremiah 29:11).
Talk About It
How have you seen God use a difficult situation in your life for good?
How do you think it’s possible to be confident in God’s power at work even when we are going through a crisis?
Jon Walker’s new book, Breakfast with Bonhoeffer, is a story of God’s faithfulness during struggles with bipolar disorder, divorce, and economic uncertainty.
This devotional © Copyright 2012 Jon Walker. All rights reserved. Used by permission.