Jesus told them, “Go back to John and tell him what you have heard and seen — the blind see, the lame walk, the lepers are cured, the deaf hear, the dead are raised to life, and the Good News is being preached to the poor.” –Matthew 11:4-5 (NLT)
I was thinking the other day about blinders. You’ve probably seen a horse wearing blinders before. They are used to keep the horse’s eyes focused on its destination, by preventing them from seeing anything but what is immediately in front of them. Without those coverings, the horse can become easily distracted. With blinders, the horse is only aware of what is ahead of it. For horses, blinders are useful.
Sometimes, people wear blinders too. They aren’t physical blinders, mind you, but ones of the heart and mind that serve to focus our attention. These blinders can serve a positive role, but, oftentimes, they are negative, especially when we become focused on our problems and miss the bigger picture of what God is doing.
For an example, the Gospel of Matthew relates a story about John the Baptist. From prison, John the Baptist sends his disciples to ask Jesus if he is the One. As a result of his ministry, John had been thrown into prison. Now, this same man who clearly recognized Jesus as the Messiah, suddenly couldn’t see past his own circumstances. His circumstances had blinded him to the bigger picture, causing him to doubt who Jesus was. Jesus’ response to John’s question is found in Matthew 11. He told John’s disciples to report to him what they have seen. In essence, Jesus was asking John to remove the blinders caused by his circumstances; to see beyond his cell walls and realize all that Jesus was doing.
What is your vision like? Is it hard to see God working because you have blinders on? Is it hard to believe or trust or take steps of faith because all you can see is what’s right in front of you? Sometimes life is not as you thought it would be and you’ve put blinders on and can only see life based on your circumstances. Maybe you wonder why God isn’t working in your life or showing Himself to you anymore. Perhaps you need to stop wondering where God is and take off the blinders that hinder your vision. Understand that our circumstances never change who God is. Our challenge is to trust God even in the midst of our circumstances.
When you doubt or find it difficult to trust God, know that He wants to help you take off your blinders. Don’t get trapped in your circumstances and lose sight of who you know the Lord to be.
1. What are the blinders in your life that keep you from seeing all God is doing?
2. Think of two ways you have seen God work recently in someone else’s life. How can you use that as encouragement when times of doubt come?
Matthew 3:11-17; Luke 22:54-62; 1 John 5:9-15