Blessed… We Want to See

As Jesus and his disciples were going out of Jericho a large crowd followed him. When two blind men sitting along the road heard that Jesus was passing by, they shouted, “Show us mercy, Lord, Son of David!” Now the crowd scolded them and told them to be quiet. But they shouted even louder, “Show us mercy, Lord, Son of David!” Jesus stopped in his tracks and called to them. “What do you want me to do for you?” he asked. “Lord, we want to see,” they replied.  Jesus had compassion on them and touched their eyes. Immediately they were able to see, and they followed him (Matthew 20:29-34, Common English Bible).

It was a very busy weekend. My apologies for the missed posts.

There is one last thing I want to lift up about this story before moving on. It has to do with our prayer lives.

This story confirms something for us that perhaps we have already known for some time and have failed to put into practice when we pray. We often pray things like, “Lord, I want to be more faithful in serving the world.” When in truth, we should be praying that but also adding to it, “…help me to find uses for my carpentry skills, perhaps through volunteering with Habitat for Humanity.

When I read this lesson I am struck by the idea that these blind men were shouting,  “Show us mercy, Lord, Son of David!” There is nothing specific here. It is a generalized , “show us mercy.” Think about that for a minute. These men sat in a conspicuous place every day to beg money from passers by. What if Jesus would have thrown a couple of coins their way. Would Jesus not be showing these two blind men mercy by giving them something that would help to at least their immediate needs? Sure, a couple of coins would at least help with the purchase of food that would meet the immediate need of hunger.

The question really becomes, would the gift of a couple of coins meet their real need. Jesus knew the real need in the story and it wasn’t to give someone a couple of coins. He knew exactly what the men wanted. But, instead of just giving the men what they needed, Jesus asked, “What do you want me to do?”

When we first pick up this lesson and read Jesus’ question, the first thing to go through the minds of many people is, “Well there is a stupid question. There blind, of course they want to see.”

But this is not a stupid question. Without question, Jesus knew their needs. Jesus knew their desires before they ever asked. Still, for reasons we may never know, God expects us to ask, to be specific in the things we really want done in our lives.

“What do you want?” Jesus asks.

“We want to see,” was the men’s reply.

We want to see as well. Perhaps in we learn to be specific in prayer, God will help us to see too, to see spiritually.

What have you specifically asked of God in prayer?

Have a blessed day in the Lord.

Joy and Thanksgiving,
Keith

Copyright 2017, J. Keith Broyles, All Rights Reserved.

Author:

"The Pastor Ponders" is my attempt to share some of my thoughts. I often share what I am thinking with my dog "Bishop," but he keeps his thoughts to himself. He will even go to sleep sometimes while I am sharing my thoughts with him. The truth is, if it doesn't involve getting his ears scratched, his belly rubbed or some kind of treat, he really doesn't care. I will say this for him, he never argues with me or tells me I am wrong. So, I decided to share some of my thoughts with whoever might come across this blog in their ramblings around the Internet. Bishop and I live in Sweeny, Texas where I am the pastor of First United Methodist Church. I have served here for the past two years. For the past 27 years I have served United Methodist congregations throughout East Texas including rural Madison County (Elwood UMC), Lovelady (First UMC) and Kennard (Center Hill UMC), Canton (First UMC), rural Smith County (Mt. Sylvan UMC and Union Chapel UMC), Grapeland (First UMC), Tyler (Pleasant Retreat UMC), Santa Fe (Aldersgate UMC), Freeport (First UMC) and Oyster Creek (Oyster Creek UMC), Diboll (First UMC), and now Sweeny (First UMC). My wife Cindy and I have been married for over 40 years. We have two grown sons. Wayne and his wife Nikki and all our grandsons (Kaleb, Noah, and Jaxon) live in Southern California. Christopher and his wife Morgan and both our granddaughters (Jenna and Natalie) live in Tyler Texas. I enjoy preaching and all aspects of preaching from research to writing to the actual preaching event. I also love writing, reading, playing the guitar as well as a bit of drawing. I have spent quite a bit of time over the past two years working with paracord on various projects, mostly prayer ropes I usually give away. I sing bass with a local barbershop chorus called The Coastalaires. I have also recently begun doing a little wood carving. I also enjoy playing with Bishop, something he likes a great deal better than listening to my thoughts. I hold an Associate of Applied Science Degree in Business Data Processing, specializing in Microcomputers from San Jacinto College in Pasadena, Texas, a Bachelor of Science in Political Science with a minor in History from Sam Houston State University in Huntsville, TX, a Master of Divinity from Southern Methodist University in Dallas, TX and a Doctor of Ministry from Carolina University of Theology. When I was a student at Carolina, the school was in Iron Station North Carolina. They have since relocated to Manassas Virginia (Yeah, go figure, a school named Carolina geographically in Virginia). This blog is mostly devotional writing, but there are other things here too. Just about every week I will either post my sermon manuscript or a video of the worship service. On occasion, I will post something I see in society. Occasionally I write a short story, a poem, or a song and will post it here too. I will say this, my motivations for writing this blog are really selfish. I write it to get what I am thinking out of my head and onto something a bit more permanent. They say, after all, once something is on the internet it never really goes away. Still, I hope you enjoy reading it. And, should you desire, you can one-up Bishop and actually tell me what you think. Who knows, it might generate a bit of discussion between you and me and anyone else who might make their way here. With Joy and Thankfulness, Keith Sweeny, Texas May 2018

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