We have a computer someone gave our family a few of years back. As the years have past the computer has started to show its age. Its glitchy, slow and running Windows Vista. To help solve some of these issues (not the Vista one, its all I have) I was going to erase and reformat the hard drive. While looking for the CD’s needed for the reinstall, I came across 30 CD’s of pictures! Pictures of our boys. Pictures of family. Picture of friends.
Knowing computers are moving away from disk drives I loaded the 5000 pictures onto my computer and stored them in the cloud. But, as I was loading the pictures it struck me as crazy to see how my sons have grown, changed and developed. Round cheeks have thinned out. Buzz cuts have given way to shaggy mops. Little fingers and toes have grown long and lean. Shoulders have stretched.
This trip down memory lane caused me to reflect on growth and develop of another kind, spiritual growth. One of my most interesting discoveries in Scripture deals spiritual formation. The story can be read in John chapter 9. However, taken has a whole this story is not about sin or healing. The true subject transcends either of these topics.
In John 9 Jesus meets a man “blind from birth.” This fact prompts the disciples to ask a question about sin that is misguided. Jesus teaches his disciples this man’s blindness is not a result of personal or parental sin, but an opportunity for God to work out his modus operandi and purpose. The word “work” in verse 3 has a general meaning relating to the activity of industry with a social or ethical bent. God’s industry is rescue and restoration. With this in mind, Jesus tells his disciples to watch because that is exactly what is going to happen.
Jesus proceeds to speak about his/our calling of bring light into a dark world. This is not a reference to opening sealed eyes, but salvation and sanctification. Jesus says, “We must work the works of Him who sent Me as long as it is day; night is coming when no one can work.” At this point Jesus heals the man’s blindness and it is at this point the story really takes off. The formerly blind man’s healing leads to not only his ability to see clearly physically but also spiritually.
As you read through the story of the blind man’s conversations with the religious leader about his healing, notice what he says about Jesus. Notice how he describes Jesus. Notice the progression.
When asked, “How then were your eyes opened?” (vs. 10, 17, 26) the man replies..
…a man named Jesus made some clay and anoint his eyes. vs 11.
…he is not just a man, but he is a prophet. vs. 17
…the blind men asks the religious leader why they keep asking him about Jesus and wonders if they are interested him becoming Jesus’ disciple too (inferring Jesus was this man’s teacher). vs. 27
…he points out (to the religious leader who should already know this) no one can doing anything apart from God (inferring Jesus is from God). vs.33
…the blind man acknowledged Jesus as Lord (and Messiah). vs. 38
a man→ a prophet→a teacher → from God→ Lord
The final destination of this blind man’s journey ends in worship!
How many of us get stuck in one of the designations of Jesus and never make it to worshipping him?
“He was a good man.”
“He said noble and worthwhile things about love and forgiveness that challenge me.”
“He was model for me to pattern my life after.”
“He was something unique and special.”
But are we able to say with this man (and Thomas), “He is my Lord and my Savior.”
In the end, the man’s eye are healed and his sight restored. But more importantly, this man’s soul is restored to its proper union and communion with its Maker. The blind man, not only see Jesus, but he see Jesus as his God and King and worships him.