30th Sunday in Ordinary Time B
On hearing that it was Jesus of Nazareth passing by, Bartimaeus began to cry out and say, “ Jesus, Son of David, pity me!” Many people rebuked him, telling him to be silent. But he kept calling out all the more, “Son of David, have pity on me.”
Jesus said, “What do you want me to do for you?” The blind man replied to him, “Master, I want to see.” Take note that the question from Jesus was direct — as was the answer of Bartimaeus. Bartimaeus knew what he wanted and he asked for what he wanted. He aggressively pursued the attention of Jesus. And, Jesus responded with a miracle. Immediately, his sight was restored. And immediately, Bartimaeus responded by following Jesus.
The gospel episode invites us once again to contemplate on what we are missing in life and to hear the voice of Jesus asking us: WHAT DO YOU WANT ME TO DO FOR YOU? WHAT IS IT THAT YOU WANT TO SEE IN YOUR LIFE? St. Mark narrates the cure of the blind man, Barthemeus, to show us the need to remove our blind spots. Don’t you realize that although we can see physically, we can be blind spiritually? At times, we can be blinded by our sinfulness; blinded by our inordinate attachments and the desire to possess; blinded by resentments, pride, self-righteousness, hard-headedness, and obstinacy. It is time to call out to Jesus here and now and with Barthemeus say, “Lord, I want to see!”
Now, let us take a look at one interesting and significant detail we have in the Gospel. When told that Jesus was calling him, Bartimaeus, the blind beggar: “immediately threw aside his cloak, jumped up and came to Jesus” (Mark 10:50). When Bartimaeus threw off his cloak, jumped up, and came to Jesus, he was giving us a very important message.
For a beggar, blind at that, the cloak is his only SECURITY- during the day it is his SHIRT; at night, it is his BED. The cloak is what he uses to collect the coins he begs. That he threw his cloak implies that he found a new source of security. This means that he threw all his securities to GOD, to Jesus. Jesus has now become his only security.
Now, which are your securities in life? Are you ready to give them up and meet Jesus? Remember the rich young man (Mark 10:17-30) who asked Jesus what he needed to do to be saved? Bartimaeus and the rich young man are a study in contrast. While the latter had to go away and leave because he could not part his possessions, the former abandoned everything and followed Jesus on the way.”
The Lord asked Bartimaeus, “What do you want me to do for you?” Today, the Lord is asking you the same question. Will your answer be like that of Bartimeus, “Lord, I want to see?”