IV SUNDAY OF LENT
1 samuel 16:1b, 6-7, 10-13a; ephesians 5:8-14; john 9:1-41
when helen keller was seven, ann sullivan, her mentor, took her to a water pump and signed the word «water» repeatedly as the water flowed into helen’s hands. after sometime, helen made the association between the word and the reality. that was a breakthrough. it opened the world to helen. she wasn’t cured of her blindness, but she could «see»!
the blind man’s story in today’s gospel is similar to helen’s. it starts with a breakthrough—JESUS cures him of his blindness—which is the beginning of a long journey of growth. the man goes from being an outcast and a beggar to becoming someone with self-confidence, independence and spiritual maturity. he grows in his knowledge of JESUS—«the man called JESUS,» «a prophet,» «a man of GOD»—till finally he makes a simple act of faith: «LORD, i believe.»
the blind man’s journey parallels our own faith life. we have been anointed and washed in the waters of baptism.
have i grown in my faith response to JESUS? do i «see» JESUS as my LORD, or is he merely a man, a prophet, a god-man?
«some people have excellent eyesight but do not see further than their noses. some have good vision yet choose to see only a little of the way, the truth and the life. and some have no physical sight yet see brilliantly along the path of CHRIST» (bruce prewer).