When my granddaughter balanced on the highest beams and danced on the lofty walls up the playground equipment, I imagined her losing her footing. I was ready to drop all my stuff and catch her. Instead, she offered joy. She shared her confidence with me.
She demonstrated faith in herself and faith in me and reminded me of God that she sees, clearly more clearly than me.
When I read about the man who was blind I can’t help but see a boy. I don’t know why.
“As he passed by, he saw a man blind from birth. And his disciples asked him, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?”
Jesus answered, “It was not that this man sinned, or his parents, but that the works of God might be displayed in him.”
John 9:1-3 ESV
Jesus is saying exactly what he means.
As God’s Son, the “light of the world”, it was God’s plan that this man, blind from birth would have an encounter with Jesus and be healed. That he would follow the “doctor’s orders” and go to a pool called Siloam and put muddy water on his eyes.
This man, a beggar before this day, all on his own with no hope for better and no hope on the part of his parents.
He was healed and everybody thought it was impossible. So they refuted, doubted, questioned the simplicity of it.
And he told all the protesters of his sudden sight recovery that he didn’t fully understand either. He just knew he could see them.
In the margin of my Bible I have written,
Can it really be true? I am healed?
The next chapter over, John details the story of the death of Lazarus and of the way Jesus tarried in attending to his friend.
When Mary and Martha, who were friends of Jesus, worshippers of him, came to tell him about their brother, he didn’t immediately go to see about him…he waited two days.
What was he thinking? Isn’t Lazarus dead? What is the reason you’re not hurrying to heal this man, your friend…don’t you love this whole family, Jesus?
Jesus told the disciples essentially, I know what I’m doing…you will see.
“Then Jesus told them plainly, “Lazarus has died, and for your sake I am glad that I was not there, so that you may believe. But let us go to him.”
John 11:14-15 ESV
When Jesus saw for himself, he wept.
John 11:35 ESV
As the Son of God, he was broken over the death and yet, He knew God’s intention. This death and resurrection will be recorded. It will make a difference in the lives of others.
It will help others make sense of their own unattended to and lingering sickness of heart, mind and body.
When Jesus says “this illness (trauma, circumstance, abuse, neglect, poverty, anxiety, fear, addiction or unmet longing) will not lead to death, he’s not saying it won’t be difficult, He is saying, if you will allow me to enlighten you, to heal you.
You will be light for others.”
And that is the why, the worth, the reason for suffering.
So that we grow into who God knows we are, that we are resurrected from the lives of before.
That we live like a rescued adult, cushioned by grace.
No longer like that child with hurts, questions and or mistakes.
The intention of Jesus for you.
“These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full.”
John 15:11 ESV
Keep going, higher than ever and with joy and hope.
Continue and believe. You are fully known and loved, have been all along.
You will see.