John 9:1-3 – The Two Views Of Pain

Daily Devotional Bible Verse

As he passed by, he saw a man blind from birth. And his disciples asked him, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?” Jesus answered, “It was not that this man sinned, or his parents, but that the works of God might be displayed in him. (John 9:1-3 ESV)

We have all probably seen the illusion above of the Old Woman – Young Girl. Depending on what you focus on, you see two different things. You either focus on the Old Woman and see her, or you focus on seeing the Young Girl and you see her. This can also be true in our lives as we look at the evil and hurting around us. The disciples decided to focus on the hurt and sin instead of seeing the picture of God working through it. We can do the same thing. Why did God allow this to happen in my life? Why is there evil in the world? Would a loving God allow so many starving children to die? We have all thought something similar to one of these questions. In God’s wisdom, he has decided to not divulge too much of where evil comes from or it’s origin (Deuteronomy 29:29).

This mystery can consume people to the core of their being and they never forgive God for an event they feel he is to blame for (they focus on the one part of the picture and forget to see it for the beautiful young girl). But, we do know that all things work together for the good of those that love God (Romans 8:28). Instead of focusing on the “disease”, we should be focusing on the cure that is Jesus. Jesus told his disciples that they were looking for the wrong thing. Stop looking for something to blame and start looking for God to praise. They were blinded by the problem of pain, instead of seeing God’s glory displayed. They could have easily missed out on the works of God. Think about that for a minute. Have you been focusing so much on the problem of pain in your life or of those around you and miss the glory of God being displayed? Realizing that God can bring good out of our hard times is also what allows us as a Christians to make it through those times. Joseph is the perfect example of this as he is sold by his brothers, becomes a slave, is put in jail, and eventually the right hand man of the king (Genesis 50:20). Jesus took the greatest sin of all, death of an innocent man, and turned it into the greatest work of God’s glory to be displayed.

How are you viewing the pain around you today?