Are we Spiritually Blind?
Brothers and sisters the story of today’s gospel reminds me of my own experience with Jesus. For many years I was blind to the Lord, I wasn’t practicing my faith and I couldn’t see what I was doing. It was killing me little by little. I was not acting as a good husband should or a good father to my children. One afternoon Jesus came to my door, in the form of a lovely elderly couple, and invited me to a weekend retreat at Cursillo! I felt that Jesus was giving me an opportunity to open my eyes and ask him what he wanted of me. To him I prayed, I know it’s going to be hard for me to go to this retreat but with you, I can. I went and had a wonderful experience with the Lord and it changed my life and opened my eyes to become a good Christian father and husband to my wife.
Today’s Gospel presents us the story of the blind man, Bartimaeus. It is very brief, but it is undoubtedly one of the Gospel accounts filled with life, mercy, and faith.
At the beginning of the story, Bartimaeus is presented as a blind man, sitting immobile on the side of the road, excluded from life in society. After his encounter with Jesus, his life is utterly transformed for now Bartimaeus can see. He follows and walks alongside Jesus.
The power of Jesus to heal and save and the honest and sincere faith of Bartimaeus is demonstrated in the Gospel reading. The Word of God shows us the way of Faith: your Faith has saved you. The fact that Bartimaeus, the blind man, was chastised and ordered to be quiet, changes to as he regains his vision energized and shouts with spontaneity in response to Jesus: “Lord, that I may see.”
The gift of vision has been appreciated throughout human history. It is so valued that it is compared to life itself. At times, when we find ourselves in difficult situations, it seems the eyes of the soul cannot see clearly. If we are anxious, unclear and full of confusion in life, we are unable to see the goodness in life, nor the goodness of God himself.
One moment where we can actually see with faith and hope will assist us to deal and overcome our anxiety, fear, discord, and confusion, and finally, the ability to defeat evil.
Bartimaeus is a model of an enthusiastic faith which can resist difficulty, which aides us in continuing to believe and plead for help even when others strive to bring us down. Bartimaeus shows us the faith capable of converting our pain to prayers which can reach God himself. Bartimaeus is the model of those who respond to Jesus and to follow him wherever he calls us to go. Bartimaeus is the figure of the Disciple who asks Jesus: “that I may see, Lord, so that I might follow you and do your will.” May we too remember to call out to Jesus when we are in darkness.
May God bless you all and your families.