and the One who walks with me on it.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Blind Bartimaeus

(Jesus) …went out of Jericho with his disciples and a great number of people, blind Bartimaeus, the son of Timaeus, sat by the highway side begging. And when he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to cry out, and say, Jesus, thou Son of David, have mercy on me.
And many charged him that he should hold his peace: but he cried the more a great deal, Thou Son of David, have mercy on me. And Jesus stood still, and commanded him to be called. And they call the blind man, saying unto him, Be of good comfort, rise; he calleth thee. And he, casting away his garment, rose, and came to Jesus.
And Jesus answered and said unto him, What wilt thou that I should do unto thee? The blind man said unto him, Lord, that I might receive my sight. And Jesus said unto him, Go thy way; thy faith hath made thee whole. And immediately he received his sight, and followed Jesus in the way. Mark 10:46-52 

       The blind beggar used to being out in the streets trying to make enough money to live off of must have wondered at the great crowd and commotion going by.  His ears must have picked up on Jesus name in conversations and Bartimaeus knew this was his chance for a miracle.  He cried out for mercy from Jesus.

       Many in the large crowd rebuked him for his scream or loud call.  Shhh! Don’t bother the Master, quiet down, you’re embarrassing yourself: I’m sure there were many excuses why the people tried to quiet the man, but none would have been done out of compassion.  Notice it is unreported that any man/ woman tried to help the blind man to Jesus or to call Jesus’ attention to the blind beggar.

       Instead of being intimidated by those he could not see, he shouted all the louder for mercy.  He caught the Lord’s attention for ‘Jesus stood still’.  Bartimaeus threw off his cloak, stood from the ground he sat upon to beg, and walked (or ran?) to Jesus.  The crowds did not stop him.  Their attempts to quiet him did not stop him.  His lack of seeing did not stop him.  Bartimaeus didn’t let anything stand in his way to get to Jesus.  He told Jesus what he wanted, and Jesus told him his faith (conviction that Jesus could heal him) made him whole.

       We need to throw off our filthy outer garments that bring us comfort and possibly hinder us on our way to Jesus walk through the crowds trying to quiet us or stop us, and find our way to Jesus.  He is the only One who can save us.  He is the only One who can heal us.  He is the only One who can free us from our bondage.  He is the only One who can make us whole.  Jesus alone is our Redeemer.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Oh Lord, help us get in trouble!

       No, I really didn’t make a typo when I put in the title.  When we pray, we tend to pray what we think would be in our best interest.  The problem is, unlike the Lord, we cannot see with eyes that have seen all the past, present and future therefore we cannot make the informed decisions that He is able to.  Just after a man was healed, Peter and John were threatened by the religious leaders of the day to stop speaking/ teaching about Jesus.  The apostles went and told the other believers:

And hearing, they with one passion lifted voice to God and said, Master, You are the God… to do whatever Your hand and Your counsel before determined to be done.  And now, Lord, look upon their threatenings, and give to Your slaves to speak Your word with all boldness, in the extending of Your hand for healing and miracles and wonders to happen through the name of …Jesus.  And they having prayed, the place in which they were gathered was shaken, and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit, and spoke the word of God with boldness. Acts 4:24-31 TIB (literal translation)

       With one passion they lifted their voices to God.  They were in complete unity of desire and thought... and that was not for their own protection.  They knew the Lord’s hand was at work and His counsel done.  So, instead of praying for protection, they prayed for boldness to speak out about Jesus which they knew would get them into more trouble, and yet, they still prayed it!  They also prayed for the Lord’s healing, miracles and wonders to happen in Jesus name- and they knew this would also cause them trouble.

       Yet, because of the unity and selflessness of their prayers in their serving of the Lord, the Holy Spirit filled them again, giving them boldness in speaking the word of God.  Everything they prayed for was for God’s glory and God’s honour, not for a reputation as a ‘man of God’, for a book deal or donations to fund their lifestyles.  They wanted the boldness to get the good news of Jesus Christ out to change the world- and they did.

Lord, give us the boldness to tell the world all about the real You!
     (Even if we get in trouble J )

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Feeding the Hunger

       Ever notice how we tend to feed our hunger?  We overindulge to gratify our bodies and eat comfort foods to assuage our troubled emotions.  We watch tv, listen to music or play computer games to feed the need for tranquility from our troubled thoughts.  We serve and fill our days with fellowship groups, Christian reading material, and studies to try and feed the hunger that remains in our spirits.

       Hunger- To feel the pain or uneasiness which is occasioned by long abstinence from food; to crave food.  To desire with great eagerness; to long for. (Webster’s 1828)  We try to feed our cravings with many natural things such as food, distractions (from struggles), and outward actions that leave us unsatisfied and still hungering for more.  That more is what we have been lacking since the beginning when Adam and Eve lost the most important satisfaction of their lives- their communion with God. (Gen. 3).

       It is when we try to feed our hunger with other things than the Lord that we feel the pain or uneasiness occasioned by long absence from Him.  No matter how much we fellowship with others, hear great messages, learn more ‘spiritual’ things, and serve our fellow man as our Lord desires, we will not feel content until we feed the real need in our lives with Him- His presence is a necessity for our satisfaction in life.  True communion with God or to be one with Him is what He desires. (John 17:3,21)  He lost it in the garden of Eden too, and He has been providing man various opportunities to find our way back to Him since then.  Here are some scriptures on hunger:

Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled. Mat. 5:6 
Blessed are ye that hunger now: for ye shall be filled... Luke 6:21 
And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst. John 6:35 

The Lord loves you.

   He wants to be with you.

       He misses you.