Friday, October 23, 2009

Healing of Bartimaus--a Reflection of the 30th Sunday of Ordinary Time

We all know this guy. Maybe we ARE this guy. You know the one--the guy that everyone goes to for stuff. It may be advice. Maybe he has a pick-up and whenever anyone needs help moving he gets the call. Maybe it's the smart guy in class who everyone asks for the answers to their homework. Maybe it's the girl who just keeps getting walked on by her boyfriend who only uses her. There are many names for them. A sap. A push-over. A chump.

My question is why do we treat Jesus like that?? We are all guilty of it in someway or another. Do we treat God like a good luck charm? "Oh please, help the Chiefs win this Sunday!" (A true miracle in itself.) Do we sin, ask forgiveness, only to sin again? Do we wait until someone is critically ill, beg for healing only to never be seen again once the healing has been done?

We've all done it in someway or another--treated God as a chump. We are blessed though because God IS always here for us not matter what or not matter how poorly we've treated him in the past. In this weekend's gospel reading (Mk 46-52) Jesus heals the blind man, Bartimaus. Jesus asks Bartimaus what he wants. Bartimaus says, "I want to see you." Jesus tell him, "Go on your way. Your faith has healed you" and Bartimaus could see.

"Go on your way." Jesus tells him to go not to stay. He didn't say "Okay, I'll heal you. Follow me now." Jesus did not make a deal and tell Bartimaus that he would be healed but that he must become a disciple. Just like Bartimaus we are free to go or free to stay. It is our choice and God will always be here for us because of his love for us.

Just like it isn't right to treat that kid in class or a girlfriend or that dude with a pick-up like a chump it's not right to treat God like a sucker. Not only is it night right but it's a waste of a chance to become closer to God. If we go to confession and receive forgiveness but go out and continue sinning we are wasting that grace. If we receive a favorable response to a prayer and we do not spend time in thanksgiving and use then build on that to strengthen our relationship with God then all we are doing is truly using Him.

God's love is free and we are free to go but the right thing is to follow him.

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