'Now as Jesus passed by, He saw a man who was blind from birth. And His disciples asked Him, saying, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?”
Jesus answered, “Neither this man nor his parents sinned, but that the works of God should be revealed in him.'
Something new about this passage just struck me.
Do you see how the disciples focus on the negative, on the past, on judgment or on pity?
Can you see how Jesus views this man in a different way? His perspective is focused on the future, on the positive potential that this man had in his life.
The works of God were indeed revealed in this man. First, Jesus gave him sight, revealing God's reality and power. But that was only the beginning of the story in John chapter 9. The man's life continued to reveal the works of God by living in a way that demonstrated the character of a godly person. When tested later in the chapter, he held fast to the simple truth he knew. After being rejected by men (and to some extent, his own family, who refused to support him before the Pharisees), this man still worshiped God's Son with a willing heart. He was not bitter at the trials that his sight had brought upon him. He was thankful and humble. Though I am not certain, I have a feeling that the man's attitude was a fulfillment of God's work in him. The attitude of his heart and mind and soul.
I have a strong tendency to fall into the trap of feeling that I need to find my place in the world in order to find peace of mind. As Heretics of Dune puts it,
"Humans live best when each has a place to stand, when each knows where he belongs in the scheme of things and what he may achieve. Destroy the place and you destroy the person."
But I am closer to finding peace. I'm coming to realize that my act of worship is not so much in the perfect choice of occupation or a certain city in the world -- it has much more to do with my daily attitude. My attitude toward God, and then my attitude toward others.
God's main goal for me is recorded in Scripture. It isn't about a certain job. Rather, He desires that His creation in individuals be fulfilled and that they take on His likeness, becoming more and more like His Son, Jesus (Genesis 1:27, Roman 8:29). While I cannot guarantee my next job, I can control the way that I act and the attitudes with which I face daily events. I can either be self-focused, dwelling on the past and inescapable present, and constantly pouring over all my inabilities (sort of like the disciples' attitudes toward the blind man) or I can look with an eternal perspective, see the hope that is mine thanks to the Lord, and consider all that I can do through Him (Philippians 4:13). If I see with the first perspective, a human perspective, I will never be thankful and I will not be able to worship God because I am consumed with myself. If I see with eyes of Christ, though, I will have a right attitude toward God, filled with peace and thanksgiving, and I will be able to worship God like the blind man did.
Knowing this does give me peace and rest from all the worries that have been consuming me lately. Now, I just need to put it into action!
As and a side, work surely does have its value. 1 Thessalonians 4:10-11 says "But we urge you, brethren, ...that you also aspire to lead a quiet life, to mind your own business, and to work with your own hands, as we commanded you..." And of course, our work can honor God, as all things can. Colossians 3:17 says: "And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him." I just need to watch that my desire to serve God through work does not override my desire to serve Him in all aspects of my life.