Thursday, February 28, 2008

Fourth Sunday of Lent

This week's scripture John 9: 1-34

He was blind from the day he was born. And he spent his days begging to survive. Jesus healed him.

And when he was healed we're told that his neighbors and those who were accustomed to seeing him beg sayed, "Is this the man who used to sit and beg?" Some said, "Yes." And some said, "It's just somebody who looks like him."

Isn't it sad. Here he is, healed from blindness, and the people most accustomed to seeing him can't tell if it's really him. They've passed by him every day on their way to work, to the market, to the synagogue...and they haven't paid enough attention to him to be able to tell if it's really him or not.

I have to admit that I'm a lot like they were. How many people do I pass by and pay only enough attention to step around them as I go on my way. How many people in my mind are identified as only 'that guy who stands in the median begging,' or that fellow who keeps trying to sneak into the building where my office is so that he can sleep in the stairwell.'

If we truly want to "reshape the world around through [Jesus'] sight and touch and sound" like the hymn we sing each Sunday of Lent says; we're going to have to learn to look at the world through Jesus' eyes. Jesus didn't just see a begger, or a leper, or a woman who'd had five husbands. He saw a person. One who hurt, and loved, and laughed, and cried. That's what he responded to. That's where His healing miracles the seeing of real people.

As we begin putting together our church profile, and defining what we see as our church's ministry, what happens if we do this? If we make an intentional choice about it, what will happen if we look around and really focus in on the particular people that we want to reach out to in Jesus' name? If we try to look at them through Jesus' eyes?

The people who passed the 'Man Born Blind' each day suffered from their own kind of blindness. Jesus offered them a healing from their blindness as well. He offers the same to us. Seeing people as individuals through the eyes of Jesus. That's where the healing starts.....for all of us.

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