Having said this, he spit on the ground, made some mud with the saliva, and put it on the man's eyes. "Go," he told him, "wash in the Pool of Siloam." John 9:6-7 (NIV)
And so Jesus came upon a man who'd been blind since birth. The man was begging on the streets of Jerusalem. Then, this stranger knelt next to him and, perhaps, said quietly, "If you do exactly what I tell you to do, you'll be able to see. I will heal you."
The blind man was desperate to be healed; he was desperate for change; he was desperate for a sign from God, desperate to know his life counted for something.
The blind beggar may have turned toward the voice, expecting the one speaking to command his eyes to open, expecting this man to speak light where there had only been darkness for a lifetime.
Just speak, Lord, so it will be done.
But Jesus didn't give such a command. Instead, he was working his saliva into the dirt, creating mud to spread across the man's eyes like a mask.
And only then did Jesus give a command. An unexpected one that required the blind man to get up and walk in faith.
"Go," Jesus told him, "wash in the Pool of Siloam."
Jesus is never subject to our expectations of him, but we are subject to his expectations of us.
Our faith begins with a real and tangible step of obedience. In other words, being a disciple of Jesus doesn't mean simply agreeing with him or even heading in the same general direction as Jesus. We're called to sever the ties to our current lives so we can follow after Jesus into our new lives -- our real lives (Colossians 3:3) - toward our destiny and purpose.
Jon Walker is the author of Costly Grace, a call to serious discipleship, and Growing with Purpose. He served as a pastor at Saddleback Church and on the staff of Purpose Driven Ministries and is currently the managing editor of Rick Warren's Daily Hope devotionals. You can find him on Facebook and Twitter. This devotional is copyrighted 2011 by Jon Walker. Used by permission.