They came to Jericho. As he and his disciples and a large crowd were leaving Jericho, Bartimaeus son of Timaeus, a blind beggar, was sitting by the roadside. When he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to shout out and say, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!” Many sternly ordered him to be quiet, but he cried out even more loudly, “Son of David, have mercy on me!” Jesus stood still and said, “Call him here.” And they called the blind man, saying to him, “Take heart; get up, he is calling you.” So throwing off his cloak, he sprang up and came to Jesus. Then Jesus said to him, “What do you want me to do for you?” The blind man said to him, “My teacher, let me see again.” Jesus said to him, “Go; your faith has made you well.” Immediately he regained his sight and followed him on the way. ~ Mark 10:36-52
Over and over in the gospels, Jesus tells his followers that sometimes those with eyes do not see, and those with ears do not hear.
Yet blind Bartimaeus saw who Jesus was without eyes that could focus on him.
Do your ears or eyes ever get in your way?
Do you see someone and come to a conclusion as to what their value is based on how they look or dress? Or how rich they are or if they look like they are on drugs or homeless?
Or their worth based on where they come from?
Do you hear someone's music and draw conclusions about them?
Or listen to a speech that fits in line with your beliefs and decide that means that person is good or honorable no matter what they may have done? Or that of someone you disagree with and conclude they are criminal despite their contributions?
Or hear youth yelling in the neighborhood and assume they are up to no good?
Our eyes and ears can sometimes get in our way. That doesn't mean we should never trust them. But it does mean that sometimes we need to look and hear beyond them.
It means looking and hearing through the lens of Jesus rather than through our own.
Help me to see with your eyes and hear with your ears, dear Lord. Amen