Are You Colorblind?
There are certain basic assumptions about ministry and leadership most of us buy into:
1. The longer we do this: the better we get.
2. The more we do this: the easier it gets.
3. The more we believe and work at it: the clearer it gets.
But what if the opposite is true?
1. The longer we do this: the harder it is to hold on to the burning passion that took hold of us when God first touched our hearts and called us by name.
2. The more we do this: the greater the danger it becomes less of a passionate calling and more of a dull routine of endless meetings, busy schedules and countess problems needing to be solved.
3. The moment we’re convinced we’re right and they’re wrong: the moment we’re convinced God and truth is on our side; well, that’s the moment we may be in more danger than we think.
Science has now developed technology that allows people who are born colorblind to see bright, vivid colors for the first time in their lives (see video). A special pair of glasses now provides a glimpse into a glorious new world and enables people to see things they never imagined possible. Until the moment they put the glasses on, they had spent their entire lives seeing the world in dull shades of gray. The transformation is immediate.
Jesus did well with broken sinners and people who realized they were at the end of their rope and all they had left was to cry out to God for help. Jesus had far more difficulty with good religious people who were convinced they knew the truth and God was on their side (see select Pharisees).
As he went along, he saw a man blind from birth. His disciples asked him, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?”
“Neither this man nor his parents sinned,” said Jesus, “but this happened so that the works of God might be displayed in him. As long as it is day, we must do the works of him who sent me. Night is coming, when no one can work. While I am in the world, I am the light of the world.”
After saying this, he spit on the ground, made some mud with the saliva, and put it on the man’s eyes. “Go,” he told him, “wash in the Pool of Siloam” (this word means “Sent”). So, the man went and washed, and came home seeing.
Turns out the blind man is the only one who can see Jesus. Not the Pharisees, the authorities, or even his own disciples. The blind man sees. The others, all who have perfect eyesight, are completely blind to what they’re really witnessing.
Beware of how easy it is to become a Pharisee. They’re so convinced God and the truth are on their side - so certain they are right - they can’t even recognize God’s son when he’s standing right in front of them. They lost their way to the point where they begin to call good evil and evil good. Don’t think it could happen to you? Think again.
When’s the last time you realized just how wrong you were; about a person, a recent experience, an idea or an issue? When’s the last time the whole way you once looked at the world was turned upside down?
“I was wrong”, is not a sign of weakness nor is it an indictment of your character. In fact, “I was wrong,” is the opening line of a deep and genuine confession that leads to true repentance and ultimately to enabling us to see the world Jesus envisions.