John 9:32-33 – Nobody has ever heard of opening the eyes of a man born blind. If this man were not from God, he could do nothing. (NIV)
2 Corinthians 12:8-9a – Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. But he said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." (NIV)
Last fall, I failed to see a tool left on the ground by a workman. Why had I missed seeing that tool? Some time before, I had noticed straight lines becoming wavy. Before long, when I looked at a person, half of their face seemed to sag like a wax figure on a hot day. When my eye doctor said that it was from cataracts and age-related macular degeneration (ARMD) wet type, I did some online research. There are two types of ARMD, dry and wet. Although both types can mean partial or eventual blindness, the dry type has the best outcome.
Inside myself, I felt like I was melting over a precipice. How was I to write or preach? Had I misheard God's call for my retirement years? I prayed for healing. Then my surgeon said he would remove the cataracts and give me injections in the eyeball which could slow further degeneration. I began getting them every second month, then more often. All the while, I prayed for Christ to heal me.
When Jesus walked along the dusty roads of Israel, He healed people, but not everyone. He healed the lame, blind, deaf, lepers, paralyzed, and mentally ill. Often, He healed them immediately. Other times, He gave them a faith-boosting task, like "take up your pallet and walk" or "go and show yourself to the priests". In one case, He made a mud paste, applied it to the eyes of a blind man, and told him to wash in the pool of Siloam. Jesus' great compassion compelled Him to heal, but He also wanted to increase the faith of everyone. He wanted to demonstrate that in His person, the kingdom of God had come among them. Those are still Jesus' reasons for healing people today.
I believe in miraculous healing. I am also aware, however, that Jesus Christ may be saying to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is made perfect in weakness." Due to my weakened eye, nothing comes as easily as it did. Whereas I had relied upon my own ability, now I must look to Jesus for the grace to continue writing. I am still praying, hoping, and believing that the One who healed the man born blind will heal my eyesight. However, as I wait and pray, Jesus Christ draws me closer to Himself and increases my faith. Now, when I rest my eyes, I rest my soul in the presence of the Great Physician.
Prayer: Great Healer and Deliverer from all our diseases, heal those who need a touch from You. Abide with them, through Your Holy Spirit, so that as they rely upon You, their faith will grow, for we pray in Your name, Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.