Sunday, October 28, 2018
Thirtieth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year B
On hearing that it was Jesus of Nazareth, [Bartimaeus] began to cry out and say, “Jesus, son of David, have pity on me.” Mark 10:47
These words from Bartimaeus the blind man present us with the perfect prayer for a few reasons.
First, this prayer reveals the deep humility of Bartimaeus. By praying this prayer, Bartimaeus expresses the fact that he knew Jesus was the source of what he needed and that he was unable to help himself. Bartimaeus knew that he was weak but that Jesus was perfect strength. Thus, he humbly turned to Jesus in his need, recognizing Him as the source.
Second, it is a prayer that cries for “pity.” Pity is the feeling of sorrow and compassion caused by the suffering of others. Pity is mercy and is the form of love given to one by another who has no need of giving it. In this prayer, Bartimaeus asks the all-powerful Lord to show him kindness and mercy even though he is unworthy of such a gift. This prayer reveals the fact that Bartimaeus knew he was undeserving of help from our Lord, but he cried out for it anyway in the hope that Jesus would help. And, indeed, He does.
Third, this prayer reveals a certain and deep passion. It is not just a request for God’s help, rather it is a cry for help. It’s a plea and a form of begging. It’s an opening up of one’s soul to God, without concern of displaying one’s own weaknesses or worry that others will witness it or what they’ll think. This shows the depth of the blind man’s prayer.
Reflect, today, upon these three lessons from Bartimaeus’ short prayer. We must be humble, beg for mercy, and do so with deep passion and longing. Praying this way will most certainly dispose us to the grace and mercy of God.
Lord, Jesus, Son of David, have pity on me. I do humbly beg You with all my heart for Your mercy and compassion. Though I am unworthy, I seek Your grace and trust in Your goodness. Jesus, I trust in You.
Saints for Today – Saint Simon and Saint Jude, Apostles