Monday, October 7, 2013
Calling out to Jesus
Then they came to Jericho. As Jesus and his disciples, together with a large crowd, were leaving the city, a blind man, Bartimaeus (that is, the Son of Timaeus), was sitting by the roadside begging. When he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to shout, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!” Many rebuked him and told him to be quiet, but he shouted all the more, “Son of David, have mercy on me!” Jesus stopped and said, “Call him.” So they called to the blind man, “Cheer up! On your feet! He’s calling you.” Throwing his cloak aside, he jumped to his feet and came to Jesus. “What do you want me to do for you?” Jesus asked him. The blind man said, “Rabbi, I want to see.” “Go,” said Jesus, “your faith has healed you.” Immediately he received his sight and followed Jesus along the road. Mark 10:46-52
What an amazing miracle! What an amazing demonstration of faith! Are we surprised when reading stories of people who have an encounter with Jesus, also have their need supplied? Bartimaeus was blind and wanted to see. He was persistent in calling out to Jesus, even when the people of Jericho tried to keep him quiet. Notice that he kept calling louder and louder, until Jesus heard him. Then the miracle happened and Bartimaeus could see. Jesus told him that his faith had healed him.
I confess to you, my experience in reading scripture and especially the gospel narratives, already had me convinced that Bartimaeus was going to be able to see. I knew Jesus could make it happen. This miracle would join the other miracles, from turning water into wine all the way up to raising Lazarus from death. After all, Jesus was in the miracle-making business, not only to show his compassion on those who needed him, but also as a demonstration of God's power.
I was drawn to this story today because I feel there is a need for us all to call out to Jesus, and when he asks us as he did Bartimaeus, "What do you want me to do for you?" Our answer should be the same words Bartimaeus used in his reply, "I want to see!" Even if your vision is 20/20 or if you, like me, depend on eyeglasses or contact lenses, we still need help from above to see lots of things. Here are a some for you to consider, but also think of others that could be added to your list.
1. We need help seeing there are people around us every day that could be drawn closer to God through our example and our influence in sharing the Good News.
2. We need to have our eyes opened to the needs of those around us, and those all the way around the world. We may feel our resources are not enough to help much, but as we have seen, minimum resources in the hands of God, can bring maximum results.
3. We are often so busy looking at the faults of others, our eyes are closed to the fact that we are sinners. As long as we live, even those who are saved by God's grace, are a part of Adam's race and need to be aware of sin. Yes, God still loves and forgives us. Our salvation should never become a source of isolation from others. Jesus can help us see the whole world is our harvest field.
What else do you need to see? Bartimaeus called out to Jesus, and so should we.