Monday, March 5, 2012

When the Miraculous Becomes Mundane

When you grow up in church, it’s so easy for the stories of Jesus to become—well—boring. After so much repetition, we lose our sense of wonder.

The miraculous becomes mundane.

When the wedding runs out of wine, we aren’t concerned. We know Jesus makes great wine. When the crowds are hungry, we aren’t worried about them. We know Jesus is going to multiply the loaves and fishes. And when the storm is raging, we don’t get too fussed about the disciples. After all, we know Jesus is going to calm the sea.

But what if we didn’t know? Would we read the stories differently?

It’s with this awareness of my own tendency to be underwhelmed that I’ve approached the gospels in recent months. And there are a few chapters in the Gospel of John that I’ve seen with fresh eyes.

It begins in Chapter 9 with a blind man. As the story unfolds, we see the disciples ask Jesus, “Who sinned? This man, or his parents, that he was born blind?”

The answer is astonishing.

Jesus flat out tells them that no one sinned, but this guy had been born blind so the works of God might be displayed in him.

Nice story. Right?

Um…sure…unless you’re the guy who was born blind. The guy who’d been begging for who knows how long in order to survive. The guy who had no reason to believe anything would ever change.

Ever thought about it from his perspective?

You may not realize it, but you have.

When suffering enters our life, we don’t know what’s going on. We don’t know how long it will last. We don’t know how the story ends. We are hurting, and we have no reason to believe anything will ever change.

It's easy, during the darkest nights, to wonder if God even cares. To question His love. To doubt his compassion.

As He reads our story, does He skim over the hard parts because He already knows how it’s going to end?

Or does He feel our fear, our pain, our grief?

I would contend that when God sees the valleys coming up in our story, He takes a deep breath and then He walks right into them with us.

It is miraculous. And it is never mundane.

Next Monday, we'll explore why I believe this.
Until then, remember…you are never alone.


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Vonda Skelton said...

Powerful, powerful post, Lynn! Thank you for your transparency...and your challenge. I needed to hear a reminder today.

Lynn Huggins Blackburn said...

Vonda - Thank YOU!