Blind But Now I See

25 Apr

While sitting in class today discussing the nuances of the historical Jesus juxtaposed with representations of him found in the Gospels, the evolution of the church and contemporary culture, I was struck when the professor broke from his scholarly stance and said that in the end, no matter how much one splits hairs over what did or didn’t happen, what Jesus did or didn’t say, affirmation of Jesus’ resurrection for him comes down to personal testimony. Speaking and referring to his own reality (versus someone else’s), he remarked, “For me, I know Jesus Christ resurrected because I was blind and now I see. I was a boy from a broken, alcoholic and abusive home. I entered a church and discovered something beyond my imagination – the kindness I saw wasn’t of humanity – it came from God. For God works through humanity. I saw there was a different way and this way was through God’s redemptive grace.”

To someone who has not experienced this phenomenon, this might sound totally bizarre and terribly naive but at the end of the day, I agree that no amount of scholarly discourse (as important as it is) can convey the truth of Christ so much as the experience of love through Christ. For I know exactly what this man was saying because I too experienced it when suddenly, after years of dabbling in many world religions including Christianity, I suddenly felt broken open by Christ’s love. Quoting Camus, “In the heart of winter, I found an invincible summer.” Something pierced through the boundaries around my heart while He picked me up from off the ground and took me in His arms. I wasn’t the same afterwards. 

Because of the intensity of my experience, I feel no need to defend it. However, I do not feel it is my place to tell someone else what to think, feel or believe, particularly when it comes to perceptions of God. I have no idea of how God works in individual lives other than mine but feel He loves us all – no matter what religious creed, race, gender or sexual orientation. I can only speak my testimony and in that, perhaps someone else will also be touched with the same gift of grace, relief and love that transforms the ugliness in the world into hope and faith for something beyond it. But this is such a complex, mysterious process, I don’t know if it is my place to evangelize other than through what I can say about my experience. At this point, all I know is that I was blind and now I see. And although I still feel pain and struggle, my vision is in technicolor. And that is a miracle worth celebrating and devoting my life to.

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