Mud on your face!… Momma is not going to like this!

Jesus spit on the ground.

Made mud.

Put the mud on a blind man’s eyes.

And then told the man to go take a bath.

Of course! That’s how to do it!

The change was so profound the man’s friends

who had known him since birth didn’t recognize him.

He said, “I once was blind but now I see.”

The religious folk got mad because…

Jesus made mud…

on the Sabbath.

Neat and tidy

that’s how we want to package God.

He refuses.  Those who live (like this formerly blind man)

graced by the mud Jesus stirs up,

may get kicked out of neat and tidy places.

Take care at this point.  Our pride creates spiritual blindness.

God sees us: we are blind and guilty because we claim to see.

35When Jesus heard what had happened, he found the man and asked, “Do you believe in the Son of Man?”36The man answered, “Who is he, sir? I want to believe in him.”37“You have seen him,” Jesus said, “and he is speaking to you!”38“Yes, Lord, I believe!” the man said. And he worshiped Jesus.39Then Jesus told him, “I entered this world to render judgment—to give sight to the blind and to show those who think they see that they are blind.”40Some Pharisees who were standing nearby heard him and asked, “Are you saying we’re blind?”41“If you were blind, you wouldn’t be guilty,” Jesus replied. “But you remain guilty because you claim you can see.  John 9:35-41

Passion Week ~ Wednesday ~ Blind no more.

Bartimaeus intrigues me. (Mark 10:46-52)

Blind.

He was intensely aware of his situation.

And he wanted a change.

He called out to Jesus until the crowd was annoyed.

“Jesus Son of David have mercy on me.”

They told him to shut up.

Jesus told him to “come here.”

Spiritual blindness is a silent condition.

When we suffer from it we do not call out to Jesus.

His grace, that’s what we need.

Grace gives us awareness.

Grace gives us courage to call out to Jesus.

Grace lifts us up, “Your faith has made you well.”

Grace gives us unction to follow the Lamb of God.

Agnus Dei qui tollis peccata mundi

miserere nobis.

Agnus Dei qui tollis peccata mundi,

miserere nobis.

Agnus Dei qui tollis peccta mundi.

Lamb of God, who takes away the

sin of the world,

have mercy on us.

Lamb of God, who takes away the

sin of the world,

have mercy on us.

Lamb of God, who takes away the

sin of the world.

Y(our) Remedy for Spiritual Stagnation

Scripture:  2 Peter 1:5-9 NLT

5In view of all this, make every effort to respond to God’s promises. Supplement your faith with a generous provision of moral excellence, and moral excellence with knowledge, 6and knowledge with self-control, and self-control with patient endurance, and patient endurance with godliness, 7and godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love for everyone.

8The more you grow like this, the more productive and useful you will be in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. 9But those who fail to develop in this way are shortsighted or blind, forgetting that they have been cleansed from their old sins.

Observations:

Peter observes that the failure to grow in our faith creates

shortsighted, blind (or myopic) people

who have forgotten that they have been cleansed from their old sins.

Application:

Remember, treasuring, reflecting on the Gospel and Jesus’ extraordinary love for us shown at the cross is the catalyst for all that is good in our spiritual growth.  If you want your relationship with Jesus to regularly be refreshed consider again the delight of coming to know Him and the joy having sin forgiven.  Pause again and consider His unmerited kindness expressed towards us.  Dive into the depths of your simple confession: “Jesus is Lord.”

Shortsighted, stagnated Christians have trouble seeing an increasingly large vision of God.  They have trouble looking back and seeing God’s grace in their past.  They have difficulty looking forward and seeing how God’s grace pulls them forward into a new way of living in His Kingdom.

Since we are interested in “our” spiritual growth I must never underestimate the power of listening long, patiently, and hopefully in the power of the Spirit with another follower of Jesus who is struggling to see grace.  The challenge when I speak is to give voice to a vision of grace without falling into the wide and destructive ditches of moralism or relativism.  Without this grace-infused wisdom we are doomed to be the blind leading the blind.

Prayer:

Heavenly Father, thank you for wiping out my past sins.  It cost you so much!  Its a problem when my sin seems larger than your grace.  Such lies are unworthy of Jesus.  I want Him to stand in the darkened rooms of my life and say to me, “Truly, Truly, I say to you…”  May He cast out the darkness and let me hear again, “You are my beloved.”  Then I will see.  AMEN.