REFLECTION FOR TODAY
May 27, 2021
By Fr. Andrew Ibegbulem, OSA
As Jesus was leaving Jericho with his disciples and a sizable crowd, Bartimaeus, a blind man, the son of Timaeus, sat by the roadside begging. On hearing that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to cry out and say, “Jesus, son of David, have pity on me.” Mk. 10:46-47
The story of Bartimaeus in our gospel reference today, and his encounter with Jesus is a story of faith and prayer. As Christian how do you pray? Do you ever “cry out” to Jesus with deep conviction and intensity? How do you think a blind man begging would cry out? Maybe he had to bellow at the top of his voice. Bartimaeus, sets for us a wonderful example of how we should pray to our Lord.
Bartimaeus wanted something badly that he had to cry out, no rebuke from the crows could stop him. His blindness symbolizes every weakness and need you have in life. So, what is it that you struggle with the most in life? What is your greatest habitual sin? Or what causes you the most grief? What is your greatest need today? Cry out to Jesus!
Notice the response of Bartimaeus when Jesus called him. He threw everything aside and hurried to Jesus. He had no doubt that Jesus would do what he asked; at that point he was not afraid of hearing a “no”. Somehow, Bartimaeus knew Jesus loved him. Like a child he acted aggressively, confident of that love.
As Christians, Jesus wants us to have an attitude like Bartimaeus in terms of faith and unconditional trust in his love. Jesus is calling on us today. He knows our hearts and understands our innermost being. Don’t be afraid of throwing outside everything that hinders you. Jesus wants us to bring the core of our hearts to him.
Bartimaeus gives us a double witness of how we must turn to our Lord. First, we must sense His gentle but clear presence within our soul. We must recognize His voice and His promptings of grace. He wants to heal us, and His presence in our lives must be sensed within. Secondly, we must become intensely fixed upon that voice within.
The crowds who rebuked Bartimaeus are symbolic of the many “voices” and temptations we experience in life that try to keep us from faithfully and fervently crying out to the God who speaks to us. Nothing should deter us from our wholehearted determination to cry out to Jesus in our need.
Reflect, today, upon Bartimaeus being an image of yourself. See yourself in desperate need of our Lord and listen for His clear voice. Do you hear Him? Do you sense Him walking by? As you do, cry out to Him with fervor, intensity, and conviction. And if you find that there are temptations that try to silence your prayer and faith, increase your intensity, and cry out “all the more” to our Lord. He will hear you, call you to Himself and give you that grace which He desires to bestow.
My merciful Jesus, You are constantly passing by, drawing me to Yourself by Your divine presence. Give me the grace I need to see my need and to call out to You with all my heart. May I never be deterred from this fervent prayer, dear Lord, and when temptation sets in, may I call out more. Jesus, I trust in You.