For some reading today, it’s been a long while since God made things clear to you. My dad has told me more than once that people love to understand things because we can control what we understand. I confess this to be true for me as I much prefer to operate in full knowledge and iron-clad guarantees than having to walk slowly, patiently and deliberately by faith. Clear my path and turn me loose! What you and I are also learning is that God prefers a very different approach to our lives. He often gives us successive touches which give gradual clarity. In between those touches He teaches us to trust Him.
“And Jesus came to Bethsaida; and they brought a blind man unto Him, and asked Him to touch him. He took the blind man by the hand, and led him out of the town; and when He had spit on his eyes, and put His hands upon him, He asked him if he saw anything. And he looked up, and said, ‘I see men as trees, walking.’ After that He put His hands again upon his eyes, and made him look up: and he was restored, and saw every man clearly.” – Mark 8:22-25
This passage has always intrigued me because it is the only time I know of in the Bible when Jesus did not completely heal someone with a single, instantaneous touch. There were two touches from the Great Physician for Bethsaida’s blind man. We know it could not have been some failure on Christ’s part – some hiccup in His healing power that required a divine do-over. We must conclude that the two-touch approach was intentional… yet no explanation is given for it. Many years ago my curious mind lingered over this passage as I desired to gain what God might share with me. What was I to learn from this unique episode in the ministry of Jesus Christ? My conclusions should not be viewed as a lone interpretation of the text but, instead, a valid application of what is shown there in the interaction between the Master and the one in need. Here are my thoughts about what we might learn from this man who had to wait in between touches from Christ:
- God has a plan to give you clear vision in life. Sometimes His methods can seem strange & even impractical. He will make His plans known to you but He’s in no hurry.
- We are fully dependent on divine enabling to see things as Christ does. Unless He gives us clarity, we have blurred discernment at best and complete blindness in the worst case scenario. We must patiently wait for Him to work for us.
- There is a reason that the Lord doesn’t make everything immediately clear to us. He may take away the full darkness to let you know He’s working but He has wise purposes in not revealing His completed work on your timetable. Blurriness is better than blindness so we must be grateful that He is working.
- Between the initial touch and the clarifying touch there is a test of your willingness to trust Him with what He is doing in your life.
- The second touch will certainly come because He who has begun a good work in you will complete it.
- The second touch allows you opportunity to see things clearly. The pause between the first and second touch allows you to see Him clearly.
These are some of the things I have learned from this passage and from my years of following my Shepherd. If it helps you to know, I am currently in a season of living in between touches and I’m looking forward to the moment when He makes things clear to me. Until then, I see Him by faith, feel His hands on my eyes, hear His voice in my ear. He’s working, preparing me to see soon what I do not currently see. He’s near and I am learning that this is enough. I’m hoping you also are learning this about Him.