"I am blind...
I am a beggar...
I am a blind beggar."
This was the identity of Bartimaeus...for days, weeks, months, years, perhaps decades.
What is your identity? Have you ever seen yourself as blind? As a beggar?
There is wisdom and freedom in identifying ourselves this way. It protects us against self-delusion and self-sufficiency. It sobers us up to our true state apart from the healing touch of Jesus. We no longer have to be the "hero" of our story. We are free to look to the True Hero.
Financial poverty and desperation helped this blind beggar see something many people never see. When Bartimaeus hears Jesus walking by he CRIES OUT. He gets loud. Very loud. He needs rescue and he knows it.
But the crowd isn't comfortable with this noise. Perhaps they believe Jesus has more important people to deal with. Maybe they're embarrassed with this blind beggar's outburst. They want to "hold him at bay." Keep the "crazies" quiet. So the crowd rebukes Bartimaeus.
Have you ever been rebuked when you're calling out for help? How'd the rebuke feel? Did it stop you? Paralyze you? Make it feel inferior? Did it shut you up? Are you willing to face rebuke to get to Jesus?
"But he cried out all the more, "Son of David, have mercy on me." I love this part! The rebuke didn't stop Bartimaeus. Blind Bartimaeus saw something in Jesus the others didn't see. "And Jesus stopped." Jesus is not too busy or too embarrassed or too inconvenienced to help blind beggars.
Friend, you may be a blind beggar, but you don't have to stay that way. Cry out to Jesus. He hears. He stops. He will call you. And when He calls you He will restore your sight and you will follow Him along the Way.
May we be a people who see our spiritual blindness and poverty. May we be a people who CRY OUT to the only One who can help. May we be a people who follow Jesus along the Way.
See you Sunday,