Mud in the Eye

LeRoy Koopman

READ : John 9:6-12

Why didn’t Jesus just heal the man’s blind eyes and be done with it? Why not just say “Be healed” and send him on his way? Why go through the messy (and unsanitary) process of making mud out of human spit and the dirt of the pathway, and then asking the beggar to walk through the streets with this sticky goo on his face? And why did Jesus specify that the man had to wash it off in a certain pool, the pool of Siloam?

We can only speculate, of course. But perhaps the incident points up the fact that miracles often involve human cooperation. The beggar could have refused to do as directed, saying that this whole messy process is demeaning. He could even have given a pious reason for his refusal, saying that he rejected any kind of human treatment and was relying on the direct intervention of God.

God sometimes combines the miraculous and the “natural.” The parting of the Red Sea, you may remember, involved “a strong east wind that blew all night” (Ex. 14:21). God is not bound by any one method. God works through east winds, through doctors and nurses, through ambulances and helicopters, through phone calls, through back rubs. God sometimes even uses the mud in our lives the ugly, the dirty, the embarrassing to perform his miracles.


Help me, Father, to be cooperative with you as you heal my ills and mold my life.