Bart, What Do You Want for Me to Do for You?

Jesus-walking-on-beach-1920x1080What a moment!  Blind Bartimaeus is face to face with Jesus.  He can’t see Him, but he knows He is there.  And then the question.  The question of all questions, well at least the best question that a blind beggar can be asked.  “What do you want for me to do for you?”  The genie is out of the bottle and is asking ‘what do you wish for?’.

How had it come to this?  The day started like the rest of his sad, dreary life.  He had made his way to one of his favorite traffic spots outside Jericho and would spend the day jingling the can, holding the sign, and calling out to the people passing by.  He had “scoped” this site out long ago.  Busy enough to “see” a steady flow of potential alms givers, slow enough that he would not get “overlooked” in the hub bub of city life.

Just as he was setting up, he heard something.  A crowd.  In the begging world crowds are a good thing.  But you had to get their attention somehow.  Change their focus from them to you, at least long enough to loosen some coins from their pockets.  What kind of crowd was it?  Where were they going?  Where had they come from?  Why were they going into Jericho this time of day?  So, he begins to ask what was going on and then the most beautiful words he had ever heard, “Jesus of Nazareth is passing by.”

Jesus?  The healer?  Some said He was the Messiah.  The leaders in the temple said He was an evil influence on the people.  But that seemed preposterous to Bart.  How can anyone who God gave the power to heal be anything but a great prophet.  “Have mercy on me.”  Who said that?  The longing of his soul could not be contained.  He hadn’t realized that what he was thinking had spilled out his mouth.

Someone near him told him to shut up and leave Jesus alone.  He had bigger fish to fry than to stop for an ordinary, everyday, blind beggar.  But, Bart could not be silenced, not today anyway!

Have mercy on me, Jesus.  Have mercy on me, Jesus!  Have mercy on me, Jesus!!  Have mercy on me, Jesus!!!

Someone near him told him to shut up and leave Jesus alone.  He had bigger fish to fry than to stop for an ordinary, everyday, blind beggar.  But, Bart could not be silenced, not today anyway!

Have mercy on me, Jesus!!!! Have mercy on me, Jesus!!!!!

And then the voice.  The voice of the One passing by.  The Healer.  The Mercy-Giver.  “What do you want Me to do for you?”  “Lord, I want to see”.  “Receive your sight, your faith has made you well.”  Just like that?  Just like that.  Just like that Jesus had passed by and changed everything.  He spoke light into the darkness.  Mercy into the discouraged soul.  God had passed by.

Maybe the only difference between us and Bart is that he was willing to cry out for mercy.  We don’t do that today.  Do we really need mercy?  Mercy? I think we really do need mercy.  But we may need to ask for it.  Will God be slow about bringing justice for His elect who cry to Him day and night (Luke 18:7).  I wonder if He is just waiting for us to desperately and consistently cry out to Him for mercy.  I wonder what He would do for me?  Or you?

Have mercy on us Jesus as you pass by today!

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