There’s an interesting passage in the 10th chapter of Mark in which a blind man seeks to have Jesus heal his blindness:
46 Then they came to Jericho. And as He was leaving Jericho with His disciples and a large crowd, a blind beggar named Bartimaeus, the son of Timaeus, was sitting by the road.
47 When he heard that it was Jesus the Nazarene, he began to cry out and say, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!”
48 Many were sternly telling him to be quiet, but he kept crying out all the more, “Son of David, have mercy on me!”
49 And Jesus stopped and said, “Call him here.” So they called the blind man, saying to him, “Take courage, stand up! He is calling for you.”
50 Throwing aside his cloak, he jumped up and came to Jesus.
51 And answering him, Jesus said, “What do you want Me to do for you?” And the blind man said to Him, “Rabboni, I want to regain my sight!”
52 And Jesus said to him, “Go; your faith has made you well.” Immediately he regained his sight and began following Him on the road.
There were many instances of Jesus’s healing in the Gospels, but verse 50 differentiates this healing from any others. It starts out, “Throwing aside his cloak . . .”
Blind people in this time and place had special cloaks that identified them. When people saw an individual wearing that particular type of cloak, they knew he was blind, and they gave the person special consideration. The cloak, for a blind person, was like a crutch for someone with a broken or lame leg. Throwing the cloak aside would have been like a lame man’s throwing aside his crutch.
This action on the part of Bartimaeus was a major step of faith. Without the cloak he would forfeit whatever special consideration it entitled him to, but he believed enough in Jesus’s healing power he was willing to forego it.
God often expects us to give Him some sign of our faith, and He rewards us richly when we do so. There’s no formula that if I always do this, He will always do that. He asks different things of different people in different circumstances, and it’s up to us to discern what He expects when.
At times there’s a fine line between following God’s lead and doing something foolishly of our own volition. I can’t say that I’m sensitive enough to God’s will to do this perfectly. Sometimes I get it right, and often I get it wrong, but whether or not I do this properly doesn’t alter the principle. We all—especially yours truly—need to hone our ability to hear God by practicing the art of listening to Him. The better we become at hearing and discerning His voice, the more we can receive His blessings.
What has God told YOU lately to do in order to trigger His blessings?
If you abide in Me and My word abides in you, then you shall know the truth, and the truth shall set you free.
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