In a church near here, somewhere, there was a man who had lost his eyesight as a fairly young man. He had been an honorable man prior to this but the people in his church figured that he must somehow have deserved his ill fortune. He was eventually reduced to beggary, the people having distanced themselves from him.
One summer, flyers went up announcing that a faith healer was coming to town. The church was fairly modern so they were not overly excited about the news. Many tongues began to wag.
At their church picnic in the park that Sunday, there was a big uproar. The blind man had been sleeping under the bandstand and popped out and asked what was going on. The people from his former church told him that a faith healer was in town and was just now entering the park.
The blind man instantly began yelling, “Faith healer, have mercy on me. Please stop. Faith healer, help me!”
The people from his church were greatly embarrassed and told him to be quiet. One said, “Why are you yelling? Can’t you see that he is nothing?”
But the blind man just looked at him with blank staring eyes.
And the more they told him to shut up the more he shouted up, “Faith healer, have mercy on me. I need your help!”
And the faith healer stopped. He looked towards the dignified and embarrassed church and commanded that whoever had yelled at him needed to come forward. The church members were nonplussed at being spoken to in such a way by that sort of charismatic fellow but they complied nonetheless. The blind man was brought forward.
The faith healer looked at the man and realized that he was not looking back.
“What do you want me to do for you?”
“I want to see.”
The faith healer said, “Receive your sight; your faith has saved you.”
And immediately he received his sight, and followed him, glorifying God: and all the people, when they saw it, gave praise unto God. (Luke 18:43)
But the proud members of the church did not follow. They scoffed.
One of his former friends said, “I knew he wasn’t blind. Imagine us doing a stunt like that. For the life of me, I can’t see why he does such things.”