Thirtieth Sunday in Ordinary Time
Psalms 126:1-2, 2-3, 4-5, 6
1 Hebrews 5:1-6
I admire the persistence Bartimaeus shows in this week’s Gospel reading. The scene was set as Jesus left Jericho and headed to Jerusalem. He was surrounded by his disciples and a large crowd. The blind son of Timaeus was begging near the road. When he realized that Jesus was the center of everyone’s attention, he cried out and asked for pity. He recognized Jesus as Messiah, despite his physical blindness.
Many in the group tried to silence him but he would not be stopped. He pleaded for Jesus, “Son of David,” to hear him. Jesus, in great compassion, called the man to him. When Bartimaeus asked to be able to see, Jesus told him, “Go your way; your faith has saved you.”
The last line of this reading is powerful. “Immediately he received his sight and followed him on the way.” Jesus instantly healed Bartimaeus and the beggar responded by following the Lord on his final journey.
We are given a beautiful example of tenacity, faith, and strength. We would be wise to be as persevering in prayer. To build and nurture our relationship with Jesus, we must continually call out to him – in need and in thankfulness. As Bartimaeus boldly asked for sight, we should confidently speak to Jesus about anything and everything in our hearts.
It is pretty amazing that Bartimaeus followed Jesus after being healed. He didn’t take his gift and disappear. Instead, he accompanied Jesus on the road to his passion. Having received a great blessing, he didn’t keep it to himself. Imagine the sights his newly restored eyes must have taken in! He witnessed our Lord’s final teachings and suffering. His eyes may have shed more than a few tears along the way.
Bartimaeus called to Jesus, prayed to Jesus, believed in Jesus, and followed Jesus. This short scripture story teaches us a lot about being faithful disciples. Don’t stop asking when you feel you haven’t gotten God’s attention. Be open and courageous in your prayers. Be confident in the love of God. Continue walking with the Lord, even when it isn’t easy.
May we all be healed of the blindness in our lives, triumph over the roadblocks in our paths, and move forward in faith together.
By: Maryrose Orange, Parishioner, Saint Vincent Basilica Parish, Latrobe