God’s best is for those who say yes.
The twin voices of the water and the blood are not for everyone, but for those who respond to God’s Spirit: believers. Connection with the creator is no small thing. It is God’s best. Have you ever taken a step of faith, seen it work and laughed to yourself?
When the patch comes off after cataract surgery the patient smiles. “It worked,” they think, and they exclaim, “I can see!” It took faith in the ophthalmologist’s skills to accept the offer of surgery, but the results speak for themselves.
When we follow the Lord, saying yes to his offerings the results do the same thing. Do we feel guilty? There is the blood-voice for that. Do we struggle with desires? Well, there is the testimony of the cleansing water-voice there.
What about agreement? Is it helpful?
John says that these three voices are in agreement. How does that help?
Let us find an answer by considering an eye condition called glaucoma. There are a variety of opinions surrounding both the diagnosis of this condition and when initiation of the life-long course of treatment should begin. Some docs are too quick to make the diagnosis ignoring clues that a given patient has healthy eyes. Others get into a rut of practice and overlook a slowly marching disease process. The quandary facing both doctor and patient is that time after time diagnostic certainty remains obscure for years. Topping it off if the patient ends up seeing multiple doctors they are likely to get various explanations, treatments or lack thereof and in the end, find themselves confused.
When blindness is at stake great fear is in the make. Disagreement among doctors does not yield confidence for the patient. And, by the way, when the patient finally can detect a problem, they have advanced disease. Paying attention to how well one sees is no safety net for glaucoma. It is a silent-blinder.
Every Monday morning our medical students and residents give a conference we call Grand Rounds where they review various patients and their conditions. I require each of them to tell us how they would tell the patient about what is going on with their eyes. I want these budding physicians to think through how they would explain a given condition in layperson terms. Good doctors perceive and try to mitigate patient confusion. Diagnosis is paramount, but in some manner, the patient’s understanding is more important.