I am a blind beggar. I am so disabled I can’t even see Jesus. I have nothing but raw need and faith. I cry out to God, and God hears. That’s the point. Jesus hears as evidence that God hears. He stops everything. He comes over to me. He doesn’t see me as an interruption or inconvenience, but as an opportunity to display God’s compassion for my suffering.
How is it that this world has suffering, but also a God who is compassionate? I cannot know. All I know is that Jesus has come to me.
I have begged for so long. I am an expert beggar. I survive by begging. Jesus asks me: Are you ready for healing? What do you want? Are you ready to step out of a life of begging into a life of sight and freedom? What man do you want? “I want to see,” I tell him. He looks at me. His voice, warm, clear, soothing, is all I hear, as if the crowd had disappeared. I feel his hands embrace my face tenderly, as if I were a child, and he bends over to whisper just to me. “Then, son of Abraham, open your eyes, and see!” I open my eyes, scaled and white, like useless orbs, except no, I have before me shapes, colors, faces, and I look into the eyes of the man who has healed me — large, intense, but laughing eyes, delighted with me, and joyous at my healing. I feel the hand of God upon me, and I am speechless, as if my breath were taken away. I fall to my knees so astounded and so grateful I can only bow. I bow again and again. He lifts me up. He again whispers so only I may hear. Strange words that have never left me. “From this day, see what is really before you.”
[A meditation upon Luke 18:35-43]