Bartimaeus and Me

He was a scruffy man, un-kept, a bit messy, sitting by the side of the road. He begged for a living. One day something unusual was happening. A crowd was gathering on the road where he usually sat. There was a buzz in the air. The great healer that he’d heard rumors about—the who had cured the lame, cleansed the lepers, and even restored the sight of the blind—this very man was supposed to pass his way any minute.

He was particularly interested. His hope had been awakened. He had a great need for a healer. He had taken up the life of begging because it was the only way he could support himself. His name was Bartimaeus and he couldn’t see. He was totally blind.

The tension mounted. The crowd grew larger. He heard that Jesus was almost passing by where he was seated. He started yelling, “Son of David, have mercy on me. Son of David, have mercy on me.” The folks standing next to him told him to shut up, but he only shouted all the louder, “Son of David, have mercy on me.”

Jesus heard the sincere cry for help, the plea for restoration and healing. He stopped and said, “Tell him to come here.” So they called out to Bartimaeus, and he jumped up and was brought to Jesus.

“What do you want me to do for you?” Jesus asked him.

“My Rabboni, My Rabbi”, he replied, “I want to see.”

“Go, Your faith has healed you.” Jesus responded to him and instantly he could see and started following Jesus down the road.

Two simple statements from a story about a blind man 2,000 years ago teach us so much about the path of restoration and healing. “I want to see”—words spoken from the depths of his heart and soul. It had been the longing of his heart for as long as he could remember. His need was great and his desire was clear—he did not want to be sightless any longer.

His faith reached out to the only solution for restoration he had ever had. He placed all of his longing and desire on what he had heard about the great healing power of Jesus. He recognized him as the long anticipated Messiah as is evidenced by his calling him the Son of David. He knew that this was the Divine messenger promised in the scriptures and he believed. He knew that healing was his if he could only get the attention of the healer. In his mind, his restoration was just a matter of making his request known.

Two things are necessary for our spiritual growth and healing—a sense of our need, and a confident trust in the healing available through the Christ power. This is the awakening of gnosis--a desire to know God.

It is our need that draws us towards God. When we open our hearts and desire renewal and restoration we are assured that it will be made available to us. Only as we have a desire for inner sight and we sense a need to restore our spiritual blindness will it be given to us. We must first ask and seek, and then we receive.

Trust is foundational in relationships. True healing takes place in relationship. As we develop a relationship of trust with the Divine, we are assured that we will receive exactly what we need for our healing. Our spiritual sight is restored and grows as we walk with the Spirit every day. We learn to trust the kindness and benevolence of God. We learn to open our hearts, minds, and souls more and more and as a result we trust more and more.

Our ongoing relationship with the Divine brings us greater awareness and sight and with these come the added benefit of healing. We are all wounded in some way. We all long for a sense of wholeness and an assurance that we are not alone. It is through the power of God’s Spirit that these are made available to us. All we have to do is open our hearts to our greatest needs and walk in a trust relationship with Source.

Bartimaeus and I have a lot in common. I want to see, also. The good news is I am given sight because of God’s great love for me. The other thing is that we are also both Christian Gnostics now following Jesus down the road of wisdom, praising God for his healing and love.