From Chapter 23, “The Cry,” in the book Pause With Jesus: Encountering His Story in Everyday Life.
Jesus had just finished lecturing the disciples about the dangers of pride. Then He walked into a crowd. People pushed for a chance to see that Man whose reputation preceded Him. They glanced, stared, listened, and walked in His direction. Suddenly a cry could be heard above the clamor.
The voice? A beggar.
The purpose? He hoped that popular leader would hear him.
His plea? A shout for mercy.
Pride didn’t cloak his insecurities. Bartimaeus, the blind beggar, had no one to impress. Pleading in desperation, he cried for a cure. He refused to clothe his nervousness with courtesy.
Maybe he told himself his day had come.
Maybe that would be his final chance to find change.
How often do our hurting hearts incorrectly assume that, since God knows everything anyway, time shouldn’t be wasted by praying and pleading? Sincerely not wishing to order God—as some seem to enjoy attempts of—the reluctance goes the opposite way. Refusing to treat Almighty God as a cosmic bellhop is a good thing. But failing to pray doesn’t fit my reading of these stories. It distances the needy from His hands.
In these narratives I hear an invitation, a welcome, a summons. I hear Christ saying, “Come to me. Ask me.”
Like Bartimaeus, we do not fully see.
We lack much. We are beggars.
Unlike Bartimaeus, we refuse to cry frantically for God to rescue us. Prayer permits us to admit our helplessness. It allows us to participate in the movement of God. Allowed to join God in seeing His work accomplished? Yes, I confess, the plot doesn’t seem to all fit together when we take the risky belief that an omnipotent (all-powerful) and omniscient (all-knowing) Creator often waits for our cry before taking action.
Crowds of beggars walked past Jesus. Many chose to remain where they were, as they were, refusing to howl for help. Bartimaeus cried until Jesus could hear him.
Where are we in that drama? Have we found our little spot—hurrying through life while carrying our hurt with us as we go? Or will we cry for a rescue, for a release, for a relationship with the True Lover?
I think it is so important to stop and cry out to God and talk to him in our time of distress. It can be so easy to not say anything and just assume God already knows so we don’t have to tell him, but there is a beauty to talking to him. To cry out to him. And being honest and real with the creator of the universe.
This blog is about Bartimaeus, a blind beggar who cried out to Jesus for mercy. The blog uses his story to illustrate the importance of prayer and admitting our helplessness to God. This should encourage us to be okay to cry out and see God when we feel hopeless. I believe this is hard for many people due to the pride many people carry. We should follow Bartimaeus’s example and cry out to God for help, rather than remaining passive in our spiritual lives.
I think it is very important to realize crying out for Jesus to help us does not make us weak. It reminds me a lot of as little kids asking our parents to reach one of our toys on the top shelf. When we ask, most of the time we were given what we wanted. So, I think it is quite simple really. Ask Jesus to come, and he will come. That does not mean it will be how we imagine but that is also okay. Be openminded. Don’t put God in a box.
Often times I find myself holding back my true feelings with Jesus because I feel as though what I am feeling or struggling with can be too much. This was a good reminder that Jesus wants us to come and cry out to HIm. He wants to help us grow in life and in our relationship with Him. There is no point in me not being honest with Him because He already knows my heart, the only thing being hurt by me not being honest is myself. Jesus an only help me if I am honest with Him and cry out to Him.
I think this is a really interesting perspective on the healing the bling beggar story. We are regularly taught to not beg or cry out for help in our prayers but you are right in that to a certain extent this goes against the stories of the Bible. I personally think it is okay to reach out to God for help and make in know to him when we need it.
I feel like personally, it becomes harder for me to reach out to Jesus when I am struggling in my relationship with him, because I know that he will take me back with open arms but I feel as if I don’t deserve it. It’s not that I know that he knows my struggle, it’s as though I know I have failed and will always continue to fail, and sometimes it makes it harder to pray, even though that is the best thing to do in those scenarios.
Sometimes it is easy to let pride get in the way of our personal relationship with God. There are times when I do not open up to him about my struggles because I feel like he is going to judge me for it. The truth is that he already knows, so there is no reason to not speak them to him. There is power in speaking about our struggles because that shows that they do not have free reign over us. It shows that we are truly giving the circumstances to God instead of letting them rule over us.
I think sometimes it’s hard for us to understand the power of prayer. Because when we pray more times than not we don’t hear God answer our prayers but we need to remember he is waiting to hear from us and God will answer our prayers but not on our time line but his. I pray that God will show me the path he has created for me so that I will not stray from the path. God is king over my life and I need to make sure I give him the prayer and time he deserves to be king over my life.
Honestly, this reminded me of what I used to to believe that showing emotions were a sign of weakness. But I know that there is something that I learned that easily trumps my previous idea: sometimes we get to the point where we have nowhere else to turn except to God. Bartimaeus felt no shame in crying out for help. And when he did, he kept going until Jesus showed up. Sometimes crying for help shows the humility and strength in admitting that I can’t do something on my own. I hope to have the same courage that Bartimaeus had.
I think this type of content is similar to the idea that when we are truly walking with Christ it is a quiet and calm place. Oftentimes the loud noise of the world distracts us from being able to hear the voice of Christ. And seeing this contrast is quite intriguing. I have lived most of my life trying to be calm and quiet enough to be able to listen to the sound of God’s voice. But this difference in how it is talked about here is quite unique. Rather than trying to quiet myself, we see noise being used as a way to get closer to Jesus rather than be the distraction we often experience.