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Thirtieth Sunday in Ordinary Time – Cycle B

23 October 2021

Reflecting on Mark 10: 46-52

Don’t you wonder what Blind Bartimaeus saw when Jesus opened his eyes? I remember my own experiences of having those eye drops that dilate the pupils during exams. It’s always a very weird hour or so while the eyes that have served me so well my whole lifetime shift back into shape.

As far as we know, Bartimaeus didn’t have a lifetime of seeing, of making sense of images. It takes quite a while for a newly-sighted person to learn how to interpret all the visual data flooding the brain. But—and I love this—it appears that the first image he saw was the face of Jesus! And that, friends, took no trial and error, no unscrambling of visual cues at all. He saw Jesus, and left everything to follow him on the Way.

It’s that moment of clarity that touches me. I’ve had several of  those moments in my life, where I’ve seen Jesus more clearly. I always, always see him in the sacraments, of course. As I reflect back, I’ve also seen him in conversation. Sometimes I’ll have a stunning moment of clarity while talking with a beloved friend or family member.

All of a sudden, I sense the unmistakable presence of Jesus, healing and giving grace to my friend, and to me. Other times, I glimpse him in the challenges so many people meet every day as they embrace difficult children, difficult work situations, difficult health failings. Look!, I think, take courage! The Master is calling you! Tell him what you want him to do for you.

In fact, I’ll bet he’s calling you right now. Open your eyes and tell him what you need.

Readers, please take this moment to pray for all who are telling Jesus their needs.

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