The Blind and the Seeing

Jesus said, “For judgment I have come into this world, so that the blind will see and those who see will become blind.”

John 9:39

Sometimes I’m amazed at how oblivious humans can be to their surroundings, especially if we think they’re familiar to us.  It can take a visit from a friend to point something new out to us, or to show us something that we’d never seen in a particular way before.

I used to work in the City of London, right on the banks of the Thames.  The views were breathtaking.  I could look out over the river to the Millennium Bridge and Tate Modern.  I could look behind me at the dome of St. Paul’s.  I often used to walk along the river, especially after dark, and admire the London skyline.  I thought I knew it pretty well, but when I returned to London recently and walked along the river once more, I spotted a building that I had never noticed before; a tall, neo-Gothic style structure that I had never seen.  I thought I knew what the London skyline looked like, but evidently I’d been blind to that particular building!

In today’s passage, Jesus talks about his purpose for coming into the world.  He has come, he says, for judgement – so that those who put their trust in him will have eternal life.  He then makes this rather cryptic statement, saying that “the blind will see and those who see will become blind.”

Jesus here seems to be talking about our frame of mind towards God; he has come to illuminate God’s plan to all those people who didn’t know it or understand it – those who were blind to it.  Similarly, those who think they had a good idea of God’s plan will be exposed as being blind; their view of God’s plan is out of kilter with Jesus’.

If we think that we know God, we know his plan for us, and we arrogantly go about our own lives without thinking of God, we will be blind to what God’s actual intentions are, which can only be bad news in the long term.  If we are humble, however, and submit to God’s plan, listen to him and allow him to guide our lives, we will gain a much better understanding of what it means to serve God, and will be rewarded.

I have been greatly challenged myself today as I write this.  I will be trying to eradicate my arrogant self-belief, and will be trying to humbly submit to God’s plan for my life.  Will you join me?

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