Journey with Jesus Lent Devotional Week 4
Week 4 ┃ Sheila Sekela
“’Neither this man or his parents sinned,’ said Jesus, ‘but this happened so that the works of God might be displayed in him.’” John 9:3
The 9th chapter of John, Jesus’ healing of the man born blind, is one of my favorites in the gospels largely because I love the feistiness of the healed man with the Pharisees. I think his eyes had been opened to more than just visual images; he saw that Jesus was from God and that the Pharisees were choosing to be deliberately blind to that fact. I love that he wasn’t intimidated by their position and called things as he saw them. (see what I did there?)
Verse 3, though, often disturbed me a bit. It didn’t seem quite fair to me that a man had been born blind just so Jesus could heal him. He had been reduced to begging because of his blindness; was that really necessary? I now think that’s a pretty short-sighted way to look at things, however, from the point of view of eternity. His blindness became a blessing in the hands of Christ, who used it to open the man’s spiritual eyes and the eyes of countless others through the ages, to His divinity and love.
I wonder, what could Jesus do with our own infirmities and difficult circumstances if we gave them to Him? Could they even become blessings in His hands? Could we grow through them, “displaying the works of God” in our lives to those around us?
In this Lenten season, as we fast from whatever we have chosen, perhaps we can examine our lives for just that. The enneagram is one tool for self-examination, getting to know ourselves a little better in order to better grow into the person and blessing God has created us to be. Learning more about our own inherent strengths and weaknesses can be very helpful as we seek to become more and more like our Lord.
Perhaps, though, you are in a particularly difficult season right now and the thought that it could be some kind of blessing is just too much to bear. Self-examination is probably the last thing you want to do, and that’s OK. Just bring your pain and sorrow to Jesus, He loves you and He understands. Let Him wrap you in His arms as you pour out your heart to Him.
Whatever your circumstances today, my prayer is that the works of God will be displayed in your life and that your eyes will be opened to the depth and height and breadth of His love for you.