“As He passed by, He saw a man blind from birth.
Yup. God is punishing either the man’s parents, or the man himself, for their sins. That is why the guy was born blind.
That’s what the disciples believed.
Have you ever noticed how often we blame God for pain, for evil, for troubles, and never the devil who is behind it all? How often we forget Job and the conversation in heaven described for us in the first chapters of that Biblical book.
Of course, if the disciples had thought about their theology longer than a nanosecond, they’d have remembered Job – and they’d have also realized the blind man couldn’t possibly have sinned while in the womb!
But as is true with most of us, when we don’t understand life’s tragic or troublesome turns, we look to blame someone for it all.
And typically, even among Christ’s disciples today, God is at fault.
But come back to Jesus’ response: “It was neither that this man sinned, nor his parents; but it was so that the works of God might be displayed in him. (John 9:1-3)
Storms come to all of us. Sometimes so devastating, we can’t catch our breath. And each time – each time – the winds howl, and waves smash against our lives, we face two choices: Blame God, or trust Him in our suffering.
Jesus’ answer to His disciples assures me that storms come to His children born through faith in the atonement of Christ – storms come for His honor and for the strengthening of our faith – if we let the storms have their perfect work.
Isn’t that what James tells us? “Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles of any kind come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. o, let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing.” (James 1:2-4, NLT)
Paul says the same thing: “We can rejoice, too, when we run into problems and trials, for we know that they help us develop endurance. ” (Romans 5:3-5, NLT)
Christian, please hear this. Please believe this: God loves you. It is Satan who wants you to believe otherwise. But never forget what Jesus said of your enemy: “He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth because there is no truth in him. Whenever he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own nature, for he is a liar and the father of lies.” (John 8:44, NASB)
What is your heartache and struggle and confusion and loneliness and pain today?
Please, Oh God, help us to TRUST you to work within it all for your honor – and for our good. Amen.