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Mark 163 - Cry Out for Help



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. When he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to shout, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!”


Mark 10:46,47


What brings you to the point of crying out for help? How painful, how depressed, how desperate do you have to become before not just reaching out but crying out for help?


How low do you have to sink into the deep, dark waters of depression do you have to go before reaching out in desperation for help? How hopeless do you have to become before crying out with hopeless voice and tears?


And when you come to that point, do you just whisper it once? Do you ask for help once and then move on? Do you ask mildly and meekly, hoping not to bother anyone?


The answer to all these questions is an emphatic and loud, “NO!” There is nothing you won’t do. No lengths you won’t go to. No option you won’t explore. You’re not embarrassed by your loud words or outrageous actions.


When Mary Ann was diagnosed with breast cancer, we were new to the central Florida area. We didn’t know any doctors or surgeons. We didn’t know the reputation of hospitals in our area. So, with great energy and determination, I started calling everyone I knew, looking for information and insights.


There was nothing I wouldn’t do. No name I would not reach out to. No one was too important or remote that I wouldn’t knock on their door. Or, if necessary, kick it down.


You see, when the life of someone I loved was in danger, I was energized beyond any boundaries. I had reached that point of being willing to do anything, and I mean anything.


This is where we find Bart[1]. He’s come to the end of his rope. He’s dropped so far down that he’s not just alone, he’s not just blind, but he’s a hopeless beggar. There was no public assistance. No governmental program. No fundraising app to reach out through.


So, when he hears that Jesus is coming near, there is nothing he’s not willing to do. No risk he’s not willing to take. No action he’s not willing to try.


He was already by the roadside, so he didn’t have to stumble around. He just started shouting, calling to Jesus to pay attention to him, to have mercy on him.


Mercy to Bart was not just some feeling. Mercy wasn’t some formless puff of air. Mercy to Bart wasn’t magical fairy dust. Mercy wasn’t dandelion seeds parachuting in the air, being tossed about by the smallest breath of wind.


No, mercy to Bart was something real. Something substantial. Something that changed a life. But not just any life, Barts life. He was asking Jesus to do something real about his life. He wasn’t just asking for prayer, but a prayer to be answered. A prayer that altered history. A prayer that would change Bart forever.


What’s your “blindness” that keeps you from seeing life from God’s perspective? I’m not so much talking about just seeing life but living life from God’s point of view. This kind of sight motivates you to change your words, thoughts, actions, and attitudes. To line them up with who God is. How he’s made the world. How he wants us to live based on what he thinks is important.


What’s the poverty of your life that keeps you “begging” just to get by? I’m not so much talking about food, clothing, housing, and things of this life, but what makes life worth living? There’s a poverty of spirit that holds you back from living life with energy, excitement, and expectation of hope and good.


From all my living, research, and reading, only Jesus offers answers to our blindness and poverty. Blindness and poverty of our selfishness. Blindness and poverty of power. Blindness and poverty of our arrogance.


We need to become brothers and sisters of Bart. Coming to the place where we’re willing to risk everything we know. All our expectations. All our self-righteousness. And why? So we can reach out, cry out, scream out to Jesus. Only when we come to that place of risk, will we find and experience the reward of being forgiven and renewed by Jesus.


What risks are you willing to take for this one chance? How desperately are you looking for answers? Hope?

[1] His full name is Bartimaeus, but I call him Bart for short

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