Seeing,Healing, Finding, Believing

A story is told of a couple who lived in a small, remote community on the west coast of Vancouver Island. One day the community was rocked by the news of a single woman’s suicide. Sometime later, the couple was relating the story to some relatives. “The worst thing is,” one of them said, “we just learned the woman was a Christian. If only we’d known that sooner, we could have befriended her.”

Our scripture reading for Sunday is John 9:1-41; the story of the blind man healed on the Sabbath. The story begins with Jesus seeing this man. From that seeing comes healing. Later Jesus finds this man, and from that finding comes belief.

The story does not end there. Jesus and the religious leaders speak. On the surface, Jesus’ words levy judgment. The leaders’ presumption of seeing is interpreted as indication of sin (verse 41). But is that not where the text began? Did Jesus not heal and restore sight to one presumed to be a sinner? The text leaves it open as to whether these leaders, and the rest of us, may yet find healing.

What might have been different for the single woman if the residents of the remote community on Vancouver Island had introduced themselves or even held a community gathering to meet new people? Opportunities for transformative healing can happen in the simplest of moments and even in the most trying times of our lives. The challenge is for us to see with the eyes of our hearts instead of the eyes in our heads. Shalom, Pr. Barb

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