Let Me Receive My Sight
In the 18th chapter of Luke, as Jesus is traveling to Jerusalem near the end of his life, he approaches Jericho and there a blind man is sitting by the roadside begging. He asks Jesus to have mercy on him. When Jesus asks him what he wants, the man replies that he wants his sight restored. Jesus heals him and moves along on his journey. The story reveals the power and compassion of Christ. How might that apply to my life? In what ways am I blinded today and how might my sight be restored?
Are you grateful for what you have or are you more focused on what you don’t have? At any time in our lives there’s bound to be a little that is amiss. And that little bit that is amiss typically receives the majority of our attention. Instead of giving thanks for all the good things going on in life, we obsess over the things that aren’t going our way. Certainly naming what is amiss and giving that to God in prayer is a good practice. But what we usually do is hang onto the problem areas and fret our way into ungratefulness. We act like God isn’t paying attention to our problems or is powerless to heal and restore.
Are you holding a grudge? Relationships are tricky things. When we are hurt by the action or inaction of a friend or family member, we often interpret the whole relationship by that one offense. We stew and keep bringing the offense up in our minds. No matter if that person has done remarkable things for us and with us, we let the offense define everything between us. It’s almost like we enjoy being angry and hurt. Maybe there’s some payoff in our grudge-keeping that we are reluctant to admit.
What are your idols that block you from seeing God’s presence? We all know God should be at the top of our list of priorities but rarely do we actually carry that out. What do you really want in life? The answer to that question often reveals our idols. Do I want approval, security, comfort, control? What are you spending most of your time doing? Where is most of your money going? That may reveal an idol in your life.
Worry and fear blind us to the goodness in life. We are so scared of being hurt that we live defensively and judgmentally. We worry about how things are going to go for us and for those we care about. None of us can live trusting God’s goodness all the time but how much time are you spending in worry and fear? Anxiety is blinding.
Laziness is another form of blindness. The effort life requires seems so big sometimes that we just abdicate all responsibility and do nothing at all. We come to focus on what is beyond our control and ignore the things that only we can control. What are you hiding from that you need to face up to?
In an odd way whatever we do see in life forms a blind spot for us. If I’m focusing on my work, it’s hard for me to see the needs of my family. If I’m obsessing on the behavior of one child, the others don’t receive the attention they need. If I am past or future oriented, it’s hard to be fully present today. If I only see the speck in your eye, I can’t see the log in my own.
Awareness – seeing things honestly and more completely – is the one activity we are asked to practice in our spiritual walk. As we are aware of our struggles, God heals and brings new life. When we talk about people getting help only when they are ready for it, we are saying that it is only when we are aware that we can be healed.
Jesus asks the blind man a strange question: “What do you want me to do for you?” In asking, Jesus invites the man to admit his blindness. As we admit our own blindness, God brings new sight. When we acknowledge our need for healing, the compassion and power of Christ comes flowing in.
Robert C. Wisnewski, Jr.