His disciples asked him, "Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents that he was born blind?"
When things go seriously wrong in our lives. When we're dealing with a difficult situation. When we're dealing with a tragedy or an unexpected emergency. When we seem to be going through a string of hardship on after another. Sometimes we feel like we're being punished. Sometimes we feel like we are being punished.
When Jesus' disciples saw a blind man, according to the teachings at the time, they believed the man was being punished. They asked Jesus if the man was being punished for his sins or for those of his parents. And Jesus said, "Neither this man nor his parents sinned."
We need to stop seeing things that happen to us or others as punishment and start recognizing that God doesn't punish us that way. Hardships are part of this broken world. Challenges are inevitable. But our faith is always strong enough to stand up against whatever difficulty we're dealing with. Every time we depend on our faith, every time we trust in God, we grow strong in our relationship with God. God doesn't punish those that love Him and He loves us. Let us always remember that we may never know how God is using the challenges in our life to prosper us.
(This is an excerpt from the Wednesday Night Recharge message delivered April 27, 2022 at Muncie Baptist Church).
~Todd E. Creason