Thursday, December 1, 2016

Listen for the Voice of Jesus

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." (Mark 10:49)
Jesus Heard!
The voice of pain cut through the din of the crowd. The one who seeks to minister hears the world differently than others.  I am amazed at what people do not hear when someone is talking to them.
 Jesus Stopped! The Son stood still.
  • He pays the ultimate tribute to one in need – He gave him attention.
  • His stopping said. “I care.”  His stopping said, “You count.”
  • Jesus never healed anyone on the run.
We must often leave our course to minister.
Jesus Called!
Mark records, “Jesus stopped and said, ‘Call him” (v. 49a). We must remember that Jesus is on the way to the Cross.  Jesus used His disciples to make the call and they were obedient to share the message of encouragement. The heart’s cry of one in need is far sweeter to Christ than the shallow hallelujahs of the crowd.  Are you hurting? Do you feel helpless? If so, understand that your plea will be sweetness to his ears.
Jesus Listened!
Have you told Jesus what you want?  “You have not because you ask not.” James 4:2  Paul told us, Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. (Philippians 4:6)
Exercise Faith with Abandon -
He came…UNHESITATINGLY!  With abandonment!  He was excited and expectant. Throwing aside his cloak, he jumped up …something blind men never do. Bartimaeus LET GO of that which he had clung to for security and protection.
Letting go. It’s the ability, as well as the willingness, to relinquish control of and obsession about plans and situations and other people, both past and present. Folks who let go seem to be more successful at navigating the twists and turns of life than those who can’t, or won’t.
The Bible, literature and “real life” are filled with the stories of people who could not let go and suffered the consequences:
  • Lot’s wife refused to let go of her hometown, Sodom, and perished (Genesis 19:24-26).
  • The Children of Israel would not let go of their fear, and they died in the wilderness (Numbers 13-14).
  • The rich ruler could not let go of his wealth, and he gave up a relationship with Jesus (Luke 18:18-30).
  • The Pharisees and Saducees could not comprehend letting go of their idea of a military messiah, and they missed meeting the true Messiah.
  • Moses fought God over the throwing down of his staff so God could use it.
Stumbling awkwardly in his blindness led only by desperation and faith he abandoned his securities and possessions and came to Jesus. 
Can you imagine Bartimaeus’ thrill? If his heart was pounding before, what was it doing now?  What a painting this would make. Face to face! Jesus with the most penetrating eyes ever and the sightless sockets of Bartimaeus framed by a countenance of ultimate expectation. This is the way to come to Jesus!
Jesus said to Bartimaeus, "Go, your faith has healed you." 
Complete faith is obedient faith. Mark tells us that when Bartimaeus received his sight, he "followed Jesus along the road."  Can you imagine the testimony that his eyesight must have been as he told others the impact that Jesus had in his life? 
A missionary, in a very isolated area of Africa, performed surgery on a poor blind man. The surgery was successful and his sight was restored. Several days after the operation the man disappeared from the hospital. Everyone was quite concerned for his well-being. Then, a few days later, the missionary opened his door and there stood the man who had been operated on. The man was holding a rope. On the other end of the rope were ten more blind people. 
Genuine faith is contagious faith. Genuine faith cannot wait to tell others,
to point others to God, to follow Jesus.

Scripture to Claim:
Throwing aside his cloak, he jumped up and came to Jesus. 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!" And Jesus said to him, "Go; your faith has made you well." Immediately he regained his sight and began following Him on the road.

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