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Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Why do bad things happen?

In review of John 9:1-5, it says:
1 As Jesus was walking along, he saw a man who had been blind from birth. 2 “Rabbi,” his disciples asked him, “why was this man born blind? Was it because of his own sins or his parents’ sins?” 3 “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. 4 We must quickly carry out the tasks assigned us by the one who sent us. The night is coming, and then no one can work. 5 But while I am here in the world, I am the light of the world.”

In John chapter 9, there is a lot going on, however the first part speaks to the question many ask; “why do bad things happen?”  As Jesus walks by a man who was born blind, his disciples ask the question; why do bad things happen to people like this man?

The natural assumption many make is that bad things happen to people who do bad things: “Was it a result of his own sins or those of his parents” they ask? Jesus debunks this and  “decouples” the reality of the griefs we all experience from our own cause-and-effect behavior.

What I’ve learned is that bad things can happen and they can be for the bad choices we make, but also can just be part of life or the impact of others free choice and how it affects us.

Jesus explains to his disciples and us that bad things are a normal aspect of our reality. However he intends to turn their destructive impact upside down by making beauty out of ugly. Jesus goes on to tell them, “This man was born blind so the power of God could be seen in him.” And then he embodies those words by offering the man a chance to see for the first time in his life, if he will do what Jesus asks him to do.

Bottom Line:
God will use our circumstances for his glory.

What this means to me:
If I allow him, God will use the bad things in my life to reveal his splendor and glory.  

God I’m not sure how you do this, but you take the choices I make and the circumstances of my life, good and bad and if I allow you, you use them for your glory. They become part of my story and how you have been working in my life. I can use these to share with others experiencing the same or similar things.

In summary, bad things are a normal aspect of reality. Jesus intends to turn their destructive impact upside down by making beauty out of ugly. I’m reminded this morning of the lyrics of the song, “Beautiful Things” from Michael and Lisa Gungor.

You make beautiful things
You make beautiful things out of the dust
You make beautiful things
You make beautiful things out of us

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