Tuesday, July 6, 2010

The Right Question

Jesus said, “You’re asking the wrong question. You’re looking for someone to blame. There is no such cause effect here. Look instead for what God can do.” John 9:3 The Message

Why? It is probably one of the most frequently asked questions by the human race. It spurs our innovation. It strengthens our thinking. It also fuels our doubts. When trials come, isn’t it our first response? Why? Why me? Why did this happen? Financial woes, relational struggles, loss of a loved one, a health crisis-- whatever the trial, the response is the same. Why? I was no different. Andrew was gone. Peter was presenting the same symptoms. Questions of why filled my prayers. Then I found John 9.

In this chapter, the disciples are walking with Jesus and pass a man blind from birth. They question Jesus as to whose sin had caused his condition, his own or that of his parents. In essence, they were asking why had it happened? Whose fault was it anyway? In the Message, Jesus replies in verse 3 saying, “You’re asking the wrong question. You’re looking for someone to blame. There is no such cause effect here. Look instead for what God can do.”

As I meditated on that verse I realized that I too was asking the wrong question in response to the sufferings of my children. Instead of asking WHY I need to ask, What does God want to do here? The NIV translates verse 3 as “but this happened so that the work of God might be displayed in his life.” No trial that comes into my life catches God by surprise. I am his child and he is in control of my life. He filters all that comes my way. If he has allowed something to enter my life, then he has a plan on how to handle it and how to use it for my good. He has allowed an opportunity for me to be used to display his work, his glory.

The next time you face tough times, even if you are in them right now, make sure to ask the right question. Instead of asking why or looking for a cause effect relationship that might not exist, ask, “So what are you doing here God? What do you have planned?” When we focus on what God can do, our problems don’t turn into giants but stay submitted to the God capable of handling them all.

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