How could this blind man see this truth about Jesus?

How could this blind man see this truth about Jesus?

30th Sunday 2021 October 24
Reflection by Fr. Jerome Guevara, SJ

On hearing that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to cry out and say,
“Jesus, son of David, have pity on me.”

Mark 10: 46-52

 

“Jesus, son of David, have pity on me.” What does this prayer mean to us today in this time of pandemic?

These honest words of the blind man Bartimaeus have come to be more well known as the “Jesus Prayer” or the “Prayer of the Heart” in Our Church. Through centuries, this prayer has evolved into this form that we have today:

“Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me a sinner. Amen.”

This is also the “Kyrie eleison” we pray to humble ourselves before the Lord at the beginning of every Eucharistic Celebration.

By calling Jesus “Son of David” it was this blind man who ironically SAW Jesus for who He really is – the awaited Messiah.

How could this blind man see this truth about Jesus?

He saw through his heart. He prayed from the heart, not from his eyes of impaired vision, nor from his human prejudices, but from the longing of the depths of his heart.

By being honest and humble about his deepest desires before the Lord, his heart was opened to realize the Truth that God reveals only to the pure in heart, as Jesus did say “Blessed are the pure in heart for they shall see God.”

The first reading reveals how Our Lord has fulfilled the deepest longing of the people of Israel, “The Lord has delivered his people … I will gather them from the ends of the world, with the blind and the lame in their midst …” and the ones who were once blind would ironically be the ones to recognize and reveal the Messiah to others.

The second reading reveals to us that Jesus is the awaited Messiah and High Priest who intercedes for those who are blind due to their sins. As His followers, as baptized Christians, we too have received the role as priests, as intercessors and people of prayer, to pray for the conversion of sinners, and of ourselves as well.

Realizing now our priestly role as the people of God, and our mission to pray for others as we recognize and reveal the Messiah in others, what are the deepest longings of your heart in this time of pandemic?

With these deeper desires, let us pray this together as one priestly people:  “Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on us, sinners. Amen.”