As we continue our journey through Lent, Christians throughout Columbia will be sharing their own beautifully written ‘letters from the heart.’ Each is accompanied by corresponding relevant scripture verse(s), and linked to sources for further study. If you would like to join us on Columbia’s Lenten journey, submit your ‘letter from the heart’ by email. Especially meaningful submissions will be printed. Let us continue our Lenten journey of repentance, meditation, and anticipation day-by-day, to its glorious culmination on Easter morning.
The Gospel reading assigned for this day is Mark 10:46-52, which tells the story of Bartimaeus, the blind beggar who had his sight restored at the gates of Jerico. He throws his cloak (probably his one possession of value) aside to search for the Lord, and upon restoring his vision, Jesus says, “Go, your faith has healed you.” He simply throws aside everything he had of value to follow Jesus, a thought that may seem absolutely crazy to some of us.
Speaking of throwing aside, during Lent, we all pick some bad habit or object to give up. For some, it could be fast food, for others it could be smoking; for some this is very difficult, sometimes almost painful. Now imagine how Bartimaeus must have felt sitting outside that gate, giving up his one possession, especially with the possibility of failure ahead. He bet everything he had on Jesus; Bartimaeus had great faith, and despite the crowd telling him to sit down and be quiet, he blindly felt his way toward Jesus. Instead of being stuck thinking about the present, he looked to the future, a future with faith and growing in Jesus’ light as he follows Him down the road. Just by having this great faith alone, Bartimaeus becomes whole again. Throughout Lent and the rest of our lives we are constantly searching, and sometimes we search blindly.
Out congregation is in a time of searching right now, not just for a new Dean but for a new shepherd, and a new friend, someone to grow in Christ’s love with us. This task is not easy, and the process is not quick. We are not, however, searching blindly. That does not mean that we are searching without faith. Like Bartimaeus, search for the Lord, blind or not. As Lent winds down and we get ready to enjoy our cheeseburgers again, be a Bartimaeus; when you find yourself searching, have great faith, for it is by faith that we are all healed.
Heathwood Hall, Grade 11
Columbia, South Carolina
(Written in April, 2012)
If you enjoyed this Lenten meditation, you can find more at Sharon's Columbia Biblical Studies Examiner homepage.