Reflections on the Readings
October 25, 2015 - Year B
30th Sunday in Ordinary Time
by Dennis S. Hankins
Bartimaeus, a blind man, sat by the roadside begging. On hearing that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to cry out, "Jesus, Son of David, have pity on me." Many rebuked him telling him to be silent, but he kept calling all the more, "Son of David, have pity on me." Jesus stopped and said, "Call him … What do you want me to do for you?" And the blind man replied to him, "Master, I want to see."
Crying Out To The Lord
Frankly, we are all Bartimaeus. All of us in some way or another reside at the side of the road of life hoping that someone might help us. Millions, in fact, sleep under or on cardboard, under the bridges, or on the bench at the park, in need of better food, a shower, a shave, and some good conversation.
Bartimaeus has never seen a sunrise nor a sunset. No light has ever pierced his eyes. He has never seen the beauty of kids playing in the neighborhood or seen a mother hold her baby like a treasure. But through tears he cries out for mercy, much like a baby cries for help when he feels alone or forsaken or in need of mother's milk. Such prayer is rich and bold. And like the second reading from last week, such prayer is encouraged. In other words, let us indeed cry out boldly for the mercy and grace we need. For our God is able to do exceeding and abundantly above what we cry out for. Another popular and favorite scripture is 2 Chronicles 7:14. If my people, which are called by My name shall humble themselves and pray, then will God hear from heaven and will heal their land.
It remains a mystery to me why anyone wants to rain on such necessary and fervent prayer. Perhaps it's embarrassing or someone thinks God is not interested in our seemingly petty and small issues. But let us not forget that Jesus said, "Come unto me all of you who labor and are burdened down, and I will give you rest." Let us cry out, for He will hear us when we are at our lowest low and our deepest need. You will never hear Jesus say, "That crying soul over there is annoying me." Just like the cry of a baby for the embrace and assistance of his mother, so our deepest need and request touch the heart of our Father. For like a mother, He is aware and knows our every concern. And even should our weeping last through the night, in the morning, there will be joy.
Indeed in that eternal day, there will be no more sorrow, no more tears, no more pain, no more blindness of soul and body; for He who fills us with light and life that is immortal, is also the light of that city where there is no need for the sun! So dear children of God, cry out! Cry out for mercy and healing; cry out more and more. Cry out until you hear Jesus say, "What is it that I can do for you?" In that moment, don't hold back, spill your heart, and you shall receive more that you could ever dream or ask for. Praise be Jesus Christ! Amen.