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Tag: spiritual blindness

Crowding Out God

Difficult times come and go. Oftentimes, when difficult circumstances and situations hit our lives, it’s hard to keep our priorities straight. Too often, when push comes to shove, God gets crowded out of our lives. This week in worship, we look at Bartimaeus, who despite difficult circumstances in his life, called out to Jesus and saw Him during difficult times. Read on for this week’s Announcements front page article.

Have you ever struggled with something really difficult? Maybe it was a family crisis, an emergency in your own life, or a really stressful period at work or school. I find that it’s easy to lose sight of the “big picture” during those difficult times. I get all caught up in the stress and pain of the moment, and don’t notice what’s going on around me.

I find it especially hard to see God in the difficult times of life. The pain and hurt clouds out everything else, making it difficult to find Jesus. Why is He letting this happen to me? Why won’t He act?  I’m so focused on me and my worries and fears in the moment that I fail to see God.

And when he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to cry out and say, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!” And many rebuked him, telling him to be silent. But he cried out all the more, “Son of David, have mercy on me!” Mark 10:47-48

Bartimaeus was familiar with difficult circumstances. However, this blind beggar hears that Jesus is coming and calls out. He chooses not to focus on his own problems, even when those around him try to keep him silent. He calls all the more for Jesus. He wasn’t focused on the difficult circumstances of his life, but instead focused in on Jesus, the only one who could bring him healing.

And Jesus said to him, “Go your way; your faith has made you well.” And immediately he recovered his sight and followed him on the way. Mark 10:52

Are you focusing on your circumstances, or the One who brings healing?

One Thing I Know

We conclude our Miracles series with the healing of a man born blind. At first, he is unsure of who Jesus is, but this he knows: once he was blind, but now he sees. Jesus would write a story of spiritual blindness healed in our lives today.

Stories are powerful. Well-crafted stories speak to our hearts, drawing us into a greater narrative. They evoke strong feelings in the hearer and inspire action. Stories awaken passions we didn’t know existed.

God is the ultimate storyteller. He has been writing stories for thousands of years in the lives of His people. We’ve heard some miraculous stories these past four weeks: the Resurrection, storms calmed, wine from water, the lame healed and now sight restored. The formerly blind man is called before the Pharisees to tell the story of Jesus’ miraculous healing. Outraged, the Pharisees demand the blind man recant.

He answered, “Whether he is a sinner I do not know. One thing I do know, that though I was blind, now I see.” John 9:25

The blind man couldn’t deny the story being written in his life:, that though he was blind, now he saw. His story had only one conclusion: Jesus must be God, for no one else could have healed him.

Today our Confirmands boldly profess that God is writing a story in their lives. Though their stories are different, they are written by one Storyteller. He is weaving their stories together into an even larger one, a story of spiritual healing and renewal in Jesus alone.

What story is God writing in your life? Is it one of healing? Of restoration? Of forgiveness?

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