Good Shepherd Episcopal Church
3416 Swansee Ridge
Sun Prairie, WI 53590-9495
A Person Born Blind
The man answered, "Here is an astonishing thing! You do not know where he comes from, and yet he opened my eyes. 31We know that God does not listen to sinners, but he does listen to one who worships him and obeys his will. Never since the world began has it been heard that anyone opened the eyes of a person born blind. 33If this man were not from God, he could do nothing." 34They answered him, "You were born entirely in sins, and are you trying to teach us?" And they drove him out. John 9:30-34
In the reading above 'a person born blind' who had his eyes opened by Jesus testifies to a doubting and bitter group of people that Jesus is a man from God. The group had called Jesus a sinner, yes - a sinner! The man who had received his sight said that couldn't be true, that Jesus was a man from God.
Because of his testimony, he was driven out of the synagogue. I wonder if that happens still today, even in the Christian church. Do we throw or drive people out of the Church who have strong and true testimonies because we find it difficult to believe that God in Christ would bless someone who we consider a sinner with a miracle of some kind?
What kind of church would be left if this were taking place? Who would be left to proclaim that Jesus is the Son of God, the one who never sinned, the one who loves all of God's people and came to seek, save and redeem us. Who would be left to testify to the love of God in Christ and the power of the Holy Spirit to do great things?
Great things - having a pair of shoes is a great thing. Through the shoe ministry, I learned that pregnant women who wear shoes have a lower incidence of giving birth to children born blind. God gifted some people to make shoes, some people to learn about fetal blindness, and some people to speak about prevention. The church and the world need all of us. God wants us to work together, cooperating with him in subduing the earth and taking care of each other. God is a God who pro-creates, who protects and who heals. He sent Jesus to teach us, save us and to forgive us.
The Apostle Paul said we should continue to meet together so we can share our knowledge and experience of God and encourage one another along life's pathway. When we do this, we worship and glorify God and testify that Jesus is indeed a man of God, the Holy Son of God.
Lord, give us ears to hear and welcome people who have strong testimonies about your healing touch in their lives. Give the leaders in your church a willingness to allow people to speak, testimonies to be heard and the full truth of the Gospel message to be proclaimed. We ask this for the sake of the building up of your heavenly kingdom, the strengthening of your church and to the Glory of Your Name and Your Son, Jesus Christ. AMEN