Read:“They spent some time in Jericho. As Jesus was leaving town, trailed by his disciples and a parade of people, a blind beggar by the name of Bartimaeus, son of Timaeus, was sitting alongside the road. When he heard that Jesus the Nazarene was passing by, he began to cry out, ‘Son of David, Jesus! Mercy, have mercy on me!’ Many tried to hush him up, but he yelled all the louder, ‘Son of David! Mercy, have mercy on me!’
Jesus stopped in his tracks. ‘Call him over.’
They called him. ‘It’s your lucky day! Get up! He’s calling you to come!’ Throwing off his coat, he was on his feet at once and came to Jesus.
Jesus said, ‘What can I do for you?’
The blind man said, ‘Rabbi, I want to see.’
‘On your way,’ said Jesus. ‘Your faith has saved and healed you.’
In that very instant he recovered his sight and followed Jesus down the road.”Mark 10:46-52 (MSG)
Reflect: At a Jesuit retreat house in Chicago, a priest walked a group of us through a reading of the passage above. As he led, he invited us into a conversation with God around the story. With a few simple questions I found myself identifying with Bartimaeus, desperate for healing, and dialoguing with God about that desire. A visual of a small child hiding during a game of hide and seek came to mind. You know, the type of hiding where the child is convinced you can’t see them but half of their body is still exposed and they have failed to blend in with the coffee table as much as they thought.
“God, I feel like you want me to approach you with boldness in my prayer for healing but I can’t. I am that child hiding. I need you to come find me and help me. I know that is not what you want from me, but it is the truth.” God replied, “My child, I will come lead you out of hiding as many times as it takes for you to realize you don’t need to hide anymore.” As the tears flowed, I realized what God wanted more than anything was my honesty with him. I did not feel bold or confident. I felt scared and insecure. I needed him to come find me and by admitting my need, he did just that.
React: Imagine a map of your prayer life. Where do you think you are on that map? Take a minute of silence and ask God to show you where you actually are. What is God inviting you into today?
Pray: God, thank you for allowing us to approach you with boldness and in times where we don’t feel very bold. Help us to engage with you no matter what is happening in our life. May we always remember you are with and for us.