After years of recurring knee pain, I finally surrendered to the notion that it was time for a full knee replacement. As the date of the procedure approached, people came together to take care of me in so many ways. One lady opened her home, cooked for me, and ministered to me for days. Others brought gifts, food, came for visits, ran errands, took me to the doctor/hospital, called, texted, and prayed for me. I was so blessed!
After a period of time, Patty, a friend and one of the board members for Entrusted Hope Ministries, walked into my Sunday school class to let me know she wanted to stop by my apartment and bring me lunch. Later in the week, she reached out to ask what I would like to eat. I concluded a salad would be fine.
Days later when I heard a knock at my door, I knew Patty had arrived. I was excited to have company and the thought of a good salad had my appetite stirring. However, when I opened the door to welcome Patty into my home, what I saw in her arms caught me off-guard. Not only was she holding the one thing I requested, but she had filled both her arms with so much more.
Patty walked in holding a large box filled with an array of already-prepared food items. The box held enough food to last for days. Along with a gift card for yet more food, on top of the box was a pretty vase filled with beautiful white roses and flowers. Her incredible kindness touched me so much!
Patty and I had a wonderful visit, and then it was time for her to leave for an upcoming football game. I thanked her again for her gifts and her kindness, and then walked her to the door. After her departure, I began to ponder over what a spiritual lesson Patty had just taught right before my eyes. I thought about how Jesus longs to do more in our lives than we could ever hope for or imagine.
“Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us, to Him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations forever and ever. Amen” (Ephesians 3:20-21).
In Mark 10:46-52, we read about the story of Bartimaeus and Jesus. Bartimaeus was a blind beggar who was sitting by the road begging. Yet, when he heard Jesus was passing by, he cried out to Him for help. Jesus posed a question, “What do you want Me to do for you?” Bartimaeus’s deep desire was to regain his sight. At this point in Bartimaeus’s life, he did not ask for a few needs, but rather for what he genuinely wanted, and Jesus gave it to him.
We can learn many lessons from Bartimaeus’s life.
Bartimaeus was a beggar: To Bartimaeus, it was just another day of sitting on the side of the road begging. He could not see; therefore, he required the help of others. Yet, little did he know that on this day, not only would Jesus pass by where he was sitting but would also intervene to provide Bartimaeus’s most desperate need.
Bartimaeus cries out: When Bartimaeus heard that Jesus was passing by, he began to cry out to Him. People attempted to quiet him, but he continued to cry out all the more. Finally, his persistent cries got the attention of Jesus.
Jesus calls for Bartimaeus: Jesus stated, “Call him here.” While others had only seen Bartimaeus as the blind beggar, Jesus saw what He would become after His intervention. While others were telling him to be quiet, Jesus stated, “Call him here.” Though others did not wish to speak with him, Jesus not only wanted to talk with him (the salad), but He also wanted to do abundantly more (the tray of food and goodies). The disciples told Bartimaeus, “Take courage, stand up! He is calling for you.”
Bartimaeus immediately comes to Jesus: “Throwing aside his cloak, he jumped up and came to Jesus.” Bartimaeus did not linger in coming to Jesus. Jesus saw, heard, and summoned him. Therefore, Bartimaeus “jumped up” and came to Jesus.
Jesus poses a question/Bartimaeus answers honestly: To be honest, times in my life have occurred when I prayed like a beggar instead of like a child of the King. I would share with Jesus a few needs, while the one thing I most desperately wanted Him to do for me remained tucked away in my heart. Jesus stated to Bartimaeus: “What do you want Me to do for you?” Bartimaeus answered: “Rabboni, I want to regain my sight!”
There is a “Go” waiting for you: The story of Bartimaeus and Jesus is a powerful story, but we must not overlook the ending. Jesus gave Bartimaeus what he wanted, and in doing so, issued a go for him. He no longer had to sit as a beggar—he could now follow Jesus as a healed individual. He no longer had to yearn for what he wanted for now, because Jesus gave him exactly what he desired. He could go forward in both joy and peace on a new path and a new journey. Much awaited Bartimaeus. Jesus said to him, “Go; your faith has made you well.” Immediately he regained his sight and began following Him on the road.
We will always be thankful for the salads in our lives, but Jesus longs to do more. A tray of food and goodies are waiting for you—arms full of blessings. What would you say if Jesus were to ask you today, “What do you want Me to do for you?”