As Jesus was leaving Jericho with his disciples and a sizable crowd, Bartimaeus, a blind man, the son of Timaeus, sat by the roadside begging.
On hearing that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to cry out and say, “Jesus, son of David, have pity on me.” And many rebuked him, telling him to be silent. But he kept calling out all the more, “Son of David, have pity on me.”
Jesus stopped and said, “Call him.” So they called the blind man, saying to him, “Take courage; get up, Jesus is calling you.” He threw aside his cloak, sprang up, and came to Jesus. Jesus said to him in reply, “What do you want me to do for you?”
The blind man replied to him, “Master, I want to see.” Jesus told him, “Go your way; your faith has saved you.” Immediately he received his sight and followed him on the way.
Yes, I am getting older. I am reminded every time I try to sing at Mass, cook a meal, take medication, assemble a newly purchased product, or even read my child’s report card. I cannot see! I used to get so frustrated and even feel helpless.
Now I have reading glasses everywhere. I used to have one pair, but that was ridiculous. I never had them when I needed them. So now I have them everywhere: each room of my house, each vehicle, etc. If I find myself in a situation where I cannot see and I have no glasses nearby, I have only myself to blame.
We can often be blinded in situations that call for a response of stewardship. We find ourselves oblivious to the needs of others. We miss the signals that we are being called to give of ourselves to a cause, a community, or an individual. The seemingly important things in life block our vision to the smaller everyday callings that Jesus places in our path.
The main reason why this occurs is that we fail to avail ourselves of the help that Jesus offers. Do we really think that we can be good stewards all on our own?
I think of the words of Psalm 119, or more truthfully the words of an old Amy Grant song; “Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.” Just like Bartimaeus, without Jesus Christ, we can’t really see a thing.
Some of life is obvious, but most of life is far from it. When we look at things through the lens that Jesus provides, stewardship opportunities are everywhere. Jesus provides this lens when we dedicate ourselves to prayer, study, and virtue. The good news is you can then take the lens wherever you go.
If you find yourself in a situation where you cannot see, you have only yourself to blame.