Scripture: Luke 18:31-43
Key verses: 35 As he approached Jericho, a blind man was sitting by the roadside begging. 36 When he heard a crowd going by, he asked what was happening. 37 They told him, “Jesus of Nazareth is passing by.” 38 Then he shouted, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!” 39 Those who were in front sternly ordered him to be quiet; but he shouted even more loudly, “Son of David, have mercy on me!” 40 Jesus stood still and ordered the man to be brought to him; and when he came near, he asked him, 41 “What do you want me to do for you?” He said, “Lord, let me see again.” 42 Jesus said to him, “Receive your sight; your faith has saved you.” 43 Immediately he regained his sight and followed him, glorifying God; and all the people, when they saw it, praised God.
Reflection: He was easy to walk by. Seated against the wall near the corner, the man’s face pivoted, following the sounds. Vacant eyes, clouded, obviously injured eyes stared out of the weathered face. His clothes were thread-bare, dirty, and smelly. Maybe they were all the material goods he had. He was easy to walk by.
Our group moved as one down the street, trying not to look at this example of the refuse of society, this throw-away example of all that goes bad in this world — illness, poverty, social isolation. We walked on. He was easy to walk by.
Then we stopped. The man’s shouting got the leader’s attention. “What do you want me to do for you?” the leader asked. “Let me see again,” the man said. “Receive your sight; your faith has saved you,” he was told.
While the others praised God, the leader looked at us, saying nothing. In the extended silence we heard our hearts begin to speak: “This man is a child of God, too! He deserves our respect, if not our attention. Is it too much to share God’s compassion with the needy? If we are welcomed and accepted, can we not model that acceptance with others?”
He was easy to walk by. Until Jesus noticed him. Then he became the center of God’s universe.
Prayer: We avert our eyes, O Lord, from the pain and suffering of this world. We choose not to notice so many of your children, our brothers and sisters. Help us to stop and attend to the people Jesus loves. Make us instruments of God’s love and comfort today to one person easy to walk by. In the name of Jesus, who stops and helps. Amen.
Author: Von Clemans
[Scripture quotations are from New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright © 1989 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved].