There is an account in the Bible (John 9) that tells of a beggar who was blind from birth, whom Jesus healed by spitting in the dirt, making mud, and putting it on the man's eyes, healing his blindness. Witnesses who saw the man come home with his sight restored doubted the account and said it wasn't the same guy. The "learned leaders" of the day came to the man and interrogated him, indignant that Jesus had healed him on the Sabbath. They called Jesus a sinner, but the man called Him a prophet. Incredulous, they interviewed the man's parents, who being nervous that they would be persecuted by the legalist set, verified that the beggar was their son, and that he was, indeed, blind from birth. They then readily deferred to their son for a detailed explanation. The leaders went back and grilled the man, accusing him of being a liar and a sinner. The man became indignant and basically told these "righteous" authorities, "Hey, you guys claim to have all the answers, yet you don't know where this guy Jesus comes from.  How in the world could he have made me see with just  his spit if he wasn't from God? And we all know that God doesn't listen to sinners, so what does that make you?" (Just a bit of paraphrasing, there). Then the man added simply, "Whether he is a sinner or not, I don't know. One thing I do know. I was blind but now I see!." (No paraphrasing here.)

 As a person who made a conscious decision to follow Christ, I am sick to death of how Christians are portrayed in the public square. But I'm not sick of it because of non believers. I'm sick of it because of those who claim to believe, then drag Christ's good name through public scandals, money-grubbing schemes, militant opposing of hot-button political issues, and worst of all, protesting funerals and other sacred events with hateful, vile speech in the name of Jesus Christ. No wonder you are so wary of Christians! We are labeled fanatics, weaklings, bigots, and more because of how a few portray Christ. But I'd like you to hear me out. Consider it from my end.

As a genuine follower of Christ who can honestly say knows without a shadow of a doubt that this whole Christianity claim is more real and tangible than anything else in this life, I can attest to who Christ really is. I can tell you from personal experience, He is real. He is alive. And He loves you. How do I know? Because I'm like that blind guy. All I know is "I was blind but now I see."  I was a foul mouthed, insecure, underachiever who was on a fast track to nowhere.  Tormented by debilitating anxiety attacks. Dabbling in drugs. Lying. Blowing off responsibility. Duplicitous,  attending church, youth retreats, singing in the choir, but not living it out away from Sunday and its trappings. Failing in my marriage.

I know many of you. I know that you don't believe in Christ. This breaks my heart, not because I need to be right. It breaks my heart because you're missing out! Am I perfect now that I know the living Christ? Not on your life! But in my imperfection, in my struggles, I have an advocate. I have someone I can turn to with anything I face, and He is faithful to see me through it. Sometimes it's not how I expect, but it is always for my good.

I know some of you are struggling with illness, even facing death. And you're doing it alone. I know many of you are living your lives devoid of anything deep or meaningful. You're missing out on so much beauty! Forget organized religion. Forget politics and partisanship. Forget TV evangelists promising comfort for money. I don't know about anything else except I truly was blind (lost, unhappy, anxious, failing, guilt-ridden, ashamed, angry) but now I see (imperfect, helped, loved)! Thank you for hearing me out.  I encourage you to read the book of John. In the meantime, I'll be praying that God uses it as spit and mud to your eyes!