Beyond “Why?”

“It was not because of his sins or his parents’ sins,” Jesus answered. “This happened so the power of God could be seen in him.”
John 9:3, NLT*

Jesus and his disciples encountered a man who’d been born blind, and the disciples asked about the cause. Apparently in the culture of the time, anything like this was considered a direct result of someone’s sin.

When we encounter difficult situations, how often do we ask if it’s because of something that person, or another, did? Or if we’re the ones with the trouble, how often do we ask “What have I done?” or “Why me?” Or we sulk at God and say it’s not fair?

We’re still focusing on the individual with the need. Still looking for a cause.

Jesus doesn’t say trouble is never self-inflicted, never reaping what we’ve sown. But He clearly says those aren’t the only reasons.

“This happened so the power of God could be seen in him.”

Instead of asking why, let’s ask the bigger question: God, what do You want to do in this situation? [Click to tweet this.]

He’s not saying God caused the initial problem so the people would see how good He is when He solved it. But there are plenty of things He chooses to allow, things we don’t like but that He wants to use for greater good.

What difference would it make in our outlook if we asked about God’s solution instead of about the problem?

Our God, Your thoughts and ways are beyond our comprehension, but we know You are good. You proved Your love for us through the Cross, and Your power through the Resurrection. Forgive us for looking too long at our problems. Teach us to bring them to You in trust, looking for Your help.

A good song to help our focus is Brian Doerksen‘s “Your Faithfulness.”

*New Living Translation (NLT) Holy Bible. New Living Translation copyright © 1996, 2004, 2007 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

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