PEOPLE- OR TASK-ORIENTED?
Lord, make me sensitive to the needs of those around me.
Read MATTHEW 20:29–34
Two Blind Men Receive Sight
29 As Jesus and his disciples were leaving Jericho, a large crowd followed him. 30 Two blind men were sitting by the roadside, and when they heard that Jesus was going by, they shouted, “Lord, Son of David, have mercy on us!”
31 The crowd rebuked them and told them to be quiet, but they shouted all the louder, “Lord, Son of David, have mercy on us!”
32 Jesus stopped and called them. “What do you want me to do for you?” he asked.
33 “Lord,” they answered, “we want our sight.”
34 Jesus had compassion on them and touched their eyes. Immediately they received their sight and followed him.
New International Version (NIV)
Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
“There must be a beginning to any great matter, but the continuing unto the end until it be thoroughly finished yields the true glory” (Francis Drake, c.1540–1596).
Jesus and the pilgrim crowds continue their journey to Jerusalem. They now pass through the ancient city of Jericho with its palms and springs, preparing for the arduous ascent to Jerusalem. Luke tells us that Jesus steadfastly set his face to go to Jerusalem. There is purpose to this final journey, not just to attend Passover but to accomplish the very reason for which he has come. Jesus will not be deflected from his destiny. But will these two blind men hold him up? He still has a long day of uphill walking ahead. Some of us focus more on tasks than on people. Jesus can achieve the perfect balance between the two.
The crowd has no patience for this, but the blind men will not be denied. Against the odds, they take advantage of the opportunity of their lives. Their cries increase in volume the more attempts are made to silence them. Their perseverance shows their faith in this Messianic Son of David. They plead for mercy, and when questioned are quite specific, “Lord, we want our sight” (33). The text says Jesus had “compassion” (34). This term is never used for human concern. It implies divine compassion for troubled people. Even in the midst of his own crises Jesus always has time for someone in need. Immediately, they receive their sight and follow him, which indicates that they have become his disciples.
Was this encounter an interruption or a divine appointment? To get the right balance between the tasks we must perform and our Jesus-like compassion for people, we need wisdom and sensitivity to the leading of God’s Spirit. We cannot meet every need, but love for neighbor makes demands on us, which we must not deny. It may be the only opportunity those people have.
What are your plans for this week? Do you need prayerfully to reconsider your balance between people and tasks?
Lord, Your people marvel at Your boundless compassion for the undeserving, which includes each of us at one point. Help us to be sensitive to the leading of God’s Spirit.
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