Pondering for Friday: August 16, 2019

Daily Office Readings for Friday Proper 14 Year 1

AM Psalm 102; PM Psalm 107:1-32 2 Samuel 15:19-37; Acts 21:37-22:16; Mark 10:46-52

“Then Jesus said to him, ‘What do you want me to do for you?’ The blind man said to him, ‘My teacher,let me see again.”   (Mark 10: 51)

Blind Bartimaeus could, at an earlier time, see.  We know this because he asks to see “again.”  He wanted his sight back. Maybe we too could see clearly at one time but somehow got distracted by social events, by faithless peers, by non church nonsense.  We too should ask Jesus if we can see again.  Please Jesus, Son of David, let me see with hope and faith like I used to.

Saul (in Acts) was blinded so that Paul could see! He was given new sight so that he could see what God wanted of him. When we are made to see clearly the love of Christ and how we are able to love more authentically we too become new people. We may not change our names but we are new and different and with new vision.  I have talked to many people who came to the Episcopal Church late in life.  Most of them say they found a spiritual home where they can fully express themselves.  We are not a church of “our way or the highway”; we are a church of Yahweh.

New sight or deeper insight may be the question we might want to ask ourselves.  There have been so many times that I have read passages in the Bible and took off with an idea of what God wanted of me.  And then later in life, I read the same passage and got an entirely new message.  They were the same words but the words said something new to me; it said something deeper, more loving. Both Bartimaeus and Saul/Paul came to Jesus with an undeniable faith. Jesus uses Bartimaeus’ faith to give him back his sight and uses Paul’s faith to put him on the right path.  My sight too is on a continual path of improvement; funny how that works. Our eyesight diminishes as we age but our spiritual sight can improve over time.

The eye of our mind is so important. The ability to see perfection gives us something to strive for.  Similar words were spoken at an ordination I went to some time ago. The newly ordained person said that he heard a famous jazz musician say that “if we can see excellence or perfection, we can aim for it.”   If we can see it, we can attain to it. God is acting in our midst.  We are too often blind to it.  At St Paul’s we use Eucharistic Prayer C during the summer. In that prayer we ask God to “Open our eyes to see your hand at work in the world about us.” (BCP p. 372)  We ask this at Holy Communion so that our eyes might be opened and that we too might see again and with more clarity. Not only do we want to see God’s hand at work in the world but we want to be God’s hand in the world. But, it’s hard to reach out and touch what we cannot see.

So when the world tells you to hush, but then tells you that Jesus heard you and wants you to come to him, what do you want from Jesus?  How about a change of perspective?  Most things in life are dependent on how we see them, glass half full or empty.  As the saying goes, there is always a “bright side” to everything. Jesus can do anything for you but perhaps the best thing to do for you or me is to let us see more clearly through God’s love for us, even a shared love for those who first told you to hush.

Let us ponder anew what the Almighty can do. John+

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