That the Work of God Might be Displayed

14 Oct

…but this happened so that the work of God might be displayed. –John 9:3

We question why God allows hardship and look for where things went wrong. In John 9 we learn about a young man who was born blind. In the ancient world sickness and disability were seen as consequence for sin, and everyone wanted to know if the infant or his parents were the culprit.

But Jesus shifted the paradigm, as He often does. He introduced another way to look at circumstances. Where tradition and human nature look for a cause and effect between actions and circumstances, Christ pulls the frame back and helps us understand that “unfavorable” circumstances are not always a punishment. When things go wrong from a human perspective, sometimes it is for a larger, spiritual purpose.

I have been guilty of viewing my circumstances negatively, with a very short-term focus. I have forgotten that the setbacks and challenges are not the end of the story, even when they seem to drag on painfully for a long time. I have wondered what I have done to cause God to withhold his blessing. But He sees the blessings on the horizon, and sees the blessings that He is currently providing, even though I may not see them as blessings. Yes, He may be testing and teaching me, but He is not angry with me or punishing me.

Jesus came to bring sight to the blind so that God’s glory could be displayed. When our eyes are open to the bigger picture – to the purpose behind the circumstances – it gives us patience as well as perspective. We’ve heard it often: it’s not about you. In God’s economy it is about you, but also about Him. May our eyes be opened and our

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