Thursday, May 26, 2016

Can You Throw Off Your Cloak?


Blind Bartimaeus Receives His Sight (Mark 10:46-52)
46 Then they came to Jericho. As Jesus and his disciples, together with a large crowd, were leaving the city, a blind man, Bartimaeus (which means “son of Timaeus”), was sitting by the roadside begging. 47 When he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to shout, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!”
48 Many rebuked him and told him to be quiet, but he shouted all the more, “Son of David, have mercy on me!”
49 Jesus stopped and said, “Call him.”
So they called to the blind man, “Cheer up! On your feet! He’s calling you.” 50 Throwing his cloak aside, he jumped to his feet and came to Jesus.
51 “What do you want me to do for you?” Jesus asked him.
The blind man said, “Rabbi, I want to see.”
52 “Go,” said Jesus, “your faith has healed you.” Immediately he received his sight and followed Jesus along the road.
     I have to say this scripture is one of my very favorites. Mainly because I had a conversion experience while reflecting on it two years ago during my 19th annotation retreat. One of the things I focused on was his cloak, as a beggar, it most likely was his only possession. It was his shelter, his bed, his comfort. So when the disciples went to him and said Jesus is calling you he leaped up and threw aside his cloak, his everything, to go to Jesus. The cloak can be something different for you and for me I reflected, what is it that I need to cast off to follow Jesus? What is it that I ask of Him? This morning however Father Dan gave an even further reflection. He shared the fact that he has several friends that are blind, and their houses are in perfect order so they can find things. Bartimaeus threw off his cloak, he didn't place it down or fold it next to him. This simple action reveals his faith in Jesus, throwing the cloak, knowing he would not be able to find it in his blindness. He tossed it in faith, in belief, in healing. A beautiful new take on an already favorite story. 

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