When they reached Jericho, and as Jesus and his disciples left town, a large crowd followed him. A blind beggar named Bartimaeus (son of Timaeus) was sitting beside the road. When Bartimaeus heard that Jesus of Nazareth was nearby, he began to shout, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!”
“Be quiet!” many of the people yelled at him.
But he only shouted louder, “Son of David, have mercy on me!”
When Jesus heard him, he stopped and said, “Tell him to come here.”
So they called the blind man. “Cheer up,” they said. “Come on, he’s calling you!” Bartimaeus threw aside his coat, jumped up, and came to Jesus.
“What do you want me to do for you?” Jesus asked.
“My Rabbi,” the blind man said, “I want to see!”
And Jesus said to him, “Go, for your faith has healed you.” Instantly the man could see, and he followed Jesus down the road. ~ Mark 10:46-52
Jesus is leaving Jericho. As He is, suddenly a guy named Bart begins to scream out, crying for help. You would think that the people around poor Bart would have pity on him since he is blind and begging. But they do not. They're annoyed and frustrated with his incessant yelling and tell him to "shut it."
“Be quiet!” They say, “Jesus doesn’t have time for you. He’s heading for Jerusalem. He’s got important stuff to do. What makes you think He wants to be bothered by you?!”
These people are annoyed by this man. They want him silent, they want him gone…and isn’t that how we can be sometimes? Can’t we find ourselves annoyed by people crying out for help. Indeed, we are an easily annoyed species.
“Be quiet!” We say in our spirits. “I’ve got problems of my own. I don’t have time for yours. I have a plan, an agenda, for the day, and now you’re ruining it. I don’t have time for you today. Come back tomorrow.”
Thankfully, this is not how Jesus responds to needs. While all the people are telling Bartimaeus to be quiet and get lost, what does Jesus do? He stops everything and asks this man, "What do you want Me to do for you?"
Now, remember that Jesus is heading to Jerusalem. If you read the passage that follows this, He is going there for one reason and one reason only--to hang on the cross, to die for our sins.
If anyone has a lot on his mind, it is Jesus. If anyone has a right to say, "Not now. I got more important things to do" it is Jesus. But that is NOT what Jesus does.
He stops everything, puts His agenda aside, and asks, “What can I do for you?”
To be a Christian—one who follows Christ--means sacrifice. We must put aside our way for God’s way. We must put aside our plans to help someone else. We must lay down our lives for others. Because that it what Christ did.
So let me ask, where are you giving till it hurts? When is the last time you gave up a large block of time for another?
Jesus’ sacrifice, Jesus’ pouring out Himself for the world, has drawn millions. Our sacrifices, our pouring out, will point others to Jesus who is there still reaching out for them.
If you believe the Bible, you know that Jesus didn’t stay in a comfort zone surrounded by the rich and the beautiful. Jesus reached out and touched the outcasts, the dirty, and the needy--and we should be glad of that because that includes us!
He touched people no one else would come near. He sacrificed what was most dear, so that others could experience life beyond measure.
Are you willing to do the same?