When I am in a difficult season in life, I find myself in survival mode. How can I survive today? … Then Jesus steps into the picture.
Some of my very favorite stories in scripture are those that tell of Jesus’ healing power. I love everything about these moments. The swiftness with which Jesus reacts, the intentionality behind the way he heals them, and above all the reaction of not only the person who has been healed but the surrounding crowd as well.
In Mark 10 and Luke 18, we see the story of a man named Bartimaeus who is blind and sitting on the road begging. Based on his condition and where he was located, I think it’s safe to assume that he wasn’t begging for healing, but was instead begging for money so that he could survive. There wasn’t a lot of work or opportunity available at that time for those with no sight so begging was most likely his only option. I wonder if he knew Jesus would be passing by that day or if he just happened to be in the right place at the right time. Whatever the case may be, it’s no coincidence that their paths crossed.
As I read this story, and so many other stories similar to it, I can’t help but see myself in Bartimaeus. He was asking for help to survive another day, but I imagine he didn’t have much hope in a long-term future for himself. How often do I do the same thing? When I’m struggling through life and am unsure what the future holds, how often do I settle for relying on myself or even relying on others to simply get me through one more day? My gaze is fixed on the immediate and I struggle to look up and see the hope of everyday past tomorrow because it just seems impossible.
That is, until Jesus steps into the picture. Within a few minutes, Bartimaeus’ life is radically changed. Not just for today. Not just for tomorrow. But for every single day after that. He is no longer having to beg to survive one more night, but he can begin to lift his gaze to see that the Lord has made a way for him to not only survive but to thrive for all the rest of his days.
When I am in a difficult season in life, I find myself in survival mode. How can I survive today? How can I make it until morning? My goals become temporary and I find myself unable to fix my gaze on anything past what I can accomplish on my own. Then Jesus steps into the picture. He takes my desires to survive and gives me a hope that enables me to thrive. He not only changes today for me, but he radically alters every day – from now through eternity. He fulfills my request for the bare minimum with the gift of abundance and gives me hope that is everlasting.