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 (John 9:6–7, NIV).
Every spring when I prepare my garden, I think about dirt. As I turn my raised beds, rich, loamy compost feeds my soil. But there are many other textures of dirt: heavy clay, grit that rubs between the toes, mud that clings to everything.
You’d think the Holy God of the universe would like things sterile, pristine. But He got His hands dirty when He formed Adam from the dust of the ground. When the Pharisees were about to stone a woman, Jesus wrote on the ground with His finger. He washed grit from His disciples’ feet. And He amazes me daily as He walks beside me in the muddy confusion of my ordinary life.
One of the powerful messages of the incarnation—Jesus becoming man—is that God doesn’t hold Himself far away from us. He also uses the real-life things at hand to do His miraculous work in our daily lives. He could have healed the blind man with a touch, a word or even a thought. It’s so interesting to me that Jesus made some mud and used that as a tool of healing.
This story makes me more alert to the ordinary and even messy aspects of life that God can use: an unexpected phone call that interrupts our agenda and steers us in a new direction, a broken window that gives us a chance to teach a child about grace and forgiveness, a miserable cold that reminds us to rely on God instead of our own strength, a bowl of soup that creates a memory of love for our family, a friend’s e-mail that suggests a solution to a problem they didn’t even know we had, a book we happen to pick up on the precise day we need the message within, a new job, a birth, a funeral—and even a mud puddle. Jesus came down to earth and continues to use the down-to-earth parts of our life to bring blessing.
FAITH STEP: Invite Jesus to take the muddy struggles of your life and sculpt a blessing from that humble clay.
Written by Sharon Hinck
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