And when he heard that it was Jesus the Nazarene, he began to cry out and say, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!” And many were sternly telling him to keep quiet, but he kept crying out all the more, “Son of David, have mercy on me!” And Jesus stopped and said, “Call him here.” Mark 10:47-49 (New American Standard Version)
The Jewish man Bartimaeus was not only blind he’d been reduced to begging to support himself. But even though this man was physically unable to see he had an inner vision that few of the folks around him had experienced. As he sat by the roadside day after day in his darkness he was looking for the One he knew would be sent by God to Israel. When this Anointed One showed up one day blind Bartimaeus immediately recognized Him and cried out to him for help. The many sighted folks around him told him to be quiet. Who there was truly blind? This blind man called out addressing Jesus by His Messianic title “Son of David.”
I really believe that Jesus was smiling when he told the people in the crowd to call the blind man to Him. As concerned as Jesus was for Bartimaeus’ physical condition that day His mission was to bring light to the man’s inner darkness. All the fear, frustration and estrangement from God and man Bartimaeus had experienced up to this moment were swept away in the excitement of coming to the Messiah. And God in His mercy and grace reached out and touched a blind beggar and healed his eyes so he could see.
For those of us who call on Jesus today we will find He is more than willing to stop and offer mercy. It may be to help us with a habit that is out of control, a temper we always seem to be losing or a situation that seems too large to overcome. Jesus is still Lord over all. He is constantly active in His universal power and might but He’s never too busy to stop and touch us when we cry out in our pain. Bartimaeus’ had a need and his call stopped God in His tracks and we can do the same. He stops and says, “Come to Me.” His merciful touch brings healing to our hearts and His presence light to our darkness.