I love the account of blind Bartimaeus. You can read it for yourself in Mark 10. I like it because he’s a man of determination. He has one thing on his mind and he’s not going to let anything prohibit him from getting it, unlike me and possibly you, sometimes. Maybe there’s some things you and I can learn from blind Bart. Here’s a few of them…
#1. Sometimes the routine of our life causes us to be in a rut. I’m not saying routines are bad, but let’s face us, there are times our routines leave us stale. Just think how out of whack we get when our routine is changed. It says in Mark 10:46 – “A blind beggar… Bartimaeus was sitting beside the road.” Bartimaeus sat by this roadside for who knows how long. Everyday, he sat there begging for a handout.
#2. Mark 10:47 says “When he heard that it was Jesus…” On this day, hearing that Jesus was in earshot, he made a decision to at least attempt to get out of his rut. Please remember that he was blind, not deaf. He heard the conversations of people and evidently he heard that this Jesus was a healer. When he heard that Jesus was walking in his vicinity he decided to do something.
#3. “He shouted, ‘Jesus, Son of David, have pity on me.” Mark 10:47. I believe we’re one of two people. Either we tell everyone our problems in order to get some sympathy, or we never say anything because we’re stubborn and figure we can handle life on our own. Bartimaeus decided to tell someone his woes, but not just anyone – He told the One who could actually change the circumstances – Jesus. Who are you talking to?
#4. “Many people told the man to stop, but he shouted even louder.” Mark 10:48. Bartimaeus didn’t back down because people didn’t like his noisy life. He persisted. He was relentless. It was now or never. Who knew if he would ever have an encounter with Jesus again. What are you waiting for? And why are you letting everyone else determine your destiny?
#5. He wasn’t afraid to tell Jesus what he wanted more than anything else – “I want to see!” Mark 10:51. He didn’t beat around the bush telling Jesus his whole life story, droning on and on about how unfair life was. When asked by Jesus what he wanted, he got right to the point – put all his cards out on the table. “I want to see.” What do you need Jesus to do for you today?
Here’s my word of encouragement for you today: Even when we’re in the rut we’re pretty content. Once you decide in your own heart that maybe the rut isn’t the place God intended you to be, you too will decide to jump up and head start for Jesus. When you do, tell Him what you need!
Today, I’m leaving my rut to regain my sight and walk with you. In Jesus name I pray, Amen.
Rev. Dr. MM Marxhausen
Mark was Spiritual Director for VdC from 2016 to 2019. He's written many of the devotions, especially the Devote and Affirm series, found on this website.