Jesus said, ‘I came into this world for judgement so that those who do not see may see, and those who do see may become blind.’ Some of the Pharisees near him heard this and said to him, ‘Surely we are not blind, are we?’ Jesus said to them, ‘If you were blind, you would not have sin. But now that you say, “We see”, your sin remains. (John 9:39-41)
John 9 is the masterfully-told story of the man born blind. There is so much to ponder over in this story. It is well worth one or more prayerful readings. The reader follows the story of the man born blind coming to sight then slowly coming to faith. This is juxtaposed with the physical sight of the Pharisees who cannot see the truth of Jesus. To paraphrase noted Johannine scholar Frank Moloney, the certainty of their sight does not allow them to comprehend God’s vertical in-break in the person of Jesus. It is easy to get ‘wrapped up’ in ourselves, so that we become spiritually blind. Blind to our failings, blind to the reality of others. It is interesting that the sin of the Pharisees is their blindness to Jesus and their driving the blind man out of the synagogue – the centre of the Jewish community. How inclusive are we? Do we remain open to God’s surprises?
Young people can be very inclusive of others. They can also be very certain in their knowledge – very ‘black and white’. Another of our tasks is to help young people to see the ‘greys’ in life – to help them to be open to God’s surprises. Especially when what can seem like a ‘death’ is, in fact, a birth!
Have a great week!