Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Lord, I want to SEE!

Luke 18:35-43... A dirty cast-off man cries out to Jesus and others try to crowd him out, to shush him up. No way. This guy's serious--he is blind and has been forced to live his life as a beggar. He has heard about this Jesus guy, and he's heard that He heals! So he shouts all the louder and makes himself a bigger nuisance to the crowd. But not to Jesus. Jesus has this way with people. The very ones we ourselves are annoyed with. The ones we sorta just wish would leave us alone, the very ones we ourselves would be tempted to just walk on by.  But here's what Jesus does--he stops and he has the beggar brought to him. Wow. Then he asks him a simple question, "What do you want me to do for you?" The blind beggar's response always causes me to stop and ponder.

"Lord," he said, "I want to see!"

Two things have come to my mind as I've pondered this passage lately. I wonder if you might think on them with me.

The first: this blind man, though a beggar and clearly disliked by the population, did not assume that his blindness was a permanent condition. (But we certainly know that it is, don't we? haha) I LOVE that he didn't accept his blindness when he saw the chance to ditch it. Would I? If I were blind in the year 2011, I am quite sure I would have found ways to make peace with it. I would not be bitter, but I would have learned to master Braille (as completely impossible as it seems to my fingers!) and I would have probably joined a blind mother's support group. I would have learned to do life as a blind woman. Would I be constantly pounding on the door of heaven to be healed? No. I'm pretty sure I would not. I would accept my lot in life and figure, "This is how it is. I'll just have to make the best of it." But here is a man who seeks after Jesus to have his reality CHANGED. Matthew 7:7 tells us to keep on asking what we're asking for. Don't give up! Even in this same chapter of Luke Jesus shares the story of the persistent widow. Why? To emphasize the importance of persistence in prayer! Justice will be given to His chosen ones who plead with Him day and night. Now I am sure that I can rile up people by what I've said just now--because we should make the most of our current situation and we should avoid bitterness...but how do we fit that with this man's refusal to accept his blindness as forever?

The second thing I have pondered is the fact that the blind man clearly identified what he wanted. "Lord, I want to SEE." He didn't hem haw around. He was serious and straight to the point. I have echoed this man's prayer often in my life. But I'm not blind, right? Hmmm. I daresay I am though. I have eyes that show me my physical surroundings, but so often are blind to the spiritual realities that co-exist. I love the Old Testament story of the battle where God reveals all the heavenly fighters up on the hillside! If only we could SEE!!

So often I only look at my circumstances and ignore that there might be another perspective on them. My selfish perspective causes me to give way to my fears, doubts and worries. When I hear the Lord ask me, "Amy, what is it you want me to do for you?" I am careful to imitate this beggar's prayer: "Lord, I want to see." Rather than, "Well, God, could you please fix this problem for me...."  I ask to see. Gaining God's perspective on my life is often what I need far more than the actual thing fixed. Why? Because the next time something comes up (it will you know!) I want to still have my heavenly perspective in place to deal with it all. If I merely ask for a problem to be fixed, then I am no further ahead in my character.

Let's choose to SEE. Ask Him. The view might be overwhelming, but we'll for sure join the blind beggar: "Instantly the man could see and he followed Jesus praising God. And all who saw it praised God, too." Luke 18:43

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