08 January 2015

And the Blind Cried Out . . .

"And as they were going out of Jericho, a great throng accompanied Him. And behold, two blind men were sitting by the roadside, and when they heard that Jesus was passing by, they cried out, Lord, have pity and mercy on us, You Son of David! The crowds reproved them and told them to keep still; but they cried out all the more, Lord, have pity and mercy on us, You Son of David! And Jesus stopped and called them, and asked, What do you want Me to do for you? They answered Him, Lord, we want our eyes to be opened! And Jesus, in pity, touched their eyes; and instantly they received their sight and followed Him." ~Matthew 20:30-34 AMP

As I read this, it really struck me how the two blind men "cried out" to the Lord. They believed--had a firm and unwavering reliance--that He could restore their sight. So they cried aloud, above the noise of the "great throng". And when those in the crowd told them to shut up, they only raised their voices to be heard above the reproof. What would that take? For a couple of vociferous Jews, maybe not too much. But what about me? Do I have the faith to cry out aloud to my God for the miracles I need, despite the efforts of others to the contrary? Do I really trust that God will be my provider? Do I really trust that He will hear and answer me in the generous love that is so fully expressed on nearly ever page of scripture?

Yes, I believe He will. And so I will cry out, I will petition Him, I will even seek Him as insistently as the woman in the parable of the unjust judge wearied the judge until he relented and gave her justice. I will seek Him until I, too, hear His voice sounding in my own ears, saying "What do you want Me to do for you?" . . .

Last night, just as I was falling asleep, I pondered on this very thing, this work of receiving the Lord's voice, and His actual presence. He is no respecter of persons, and so if He has ever appeared to anyone else (which He has), then I have the same chance as those others did who saw and talked with Him. I wondered, "How, Lord? How is it done?" And the answer came, softly, but with clarity and solidity: "Fill yourself with the Word . . . for Jesus is the Word."

As we dive into scripture, filling ourselves with God's Word, we allow Him to teach us. We can open our minds to renewal through His Word and the Holy Spirit. We expose our minds and hearts to truth, and the Holy Ghost testifies of that truth, and bit by bit the light in us grows until it is as noon day.

God, thank You. Thank You for teaching me. Thank You for leading me. Thank You for the incredible mercy and grace that you offer to all of us, always. Because of the fall of Adam, all mankind are lost, and no matter how hard we might work to change that, we cannot merit anything of ourselves. We cannot think that Your role is to help us a little, here and there, as we press forward, enduring like good Christian soldiers. Salvation is not about putting a bandaid on a few little scrapes here and there . . . it is SALVATION. It is being snatched from the jaws of death by an All-powerful, All-able God Who has triumphed over all things. The fall wasn't just like going on vacation--you chance your locale, but remain basically the same. The fall fundamentally changed all creation, such that it was no longer naturally a home for the glory of God. Mankind FELL, and became sinful. Not just prone to a few little mistakes, if we try really hard to be good, but fundamentally flawed and unacceptable to You unless we surrender ourselves to You and You make us new through the baptism of fire and the actual receipt of the Holy Ghost that awakens the inner man and changes ALL things within us. God, I praise You for sending Yeshua to be the Lamb of God, to triumph in breaking the bonds of sin and death that we labor under, and that crying out to Him actually works. Lord, shine Your light ever more upon the earth. Show more and more people the way to life and salvation: the Lord Jesus Christ. Be merciful to those who are blinded by the attractiveness and smooth words of men in positions of power. Teach those who love You the truth, and let us feel You more and more in our lives, God. Give us strength to follow through with the changes for good we make, as we seek to be transformed through Your Spirit into Your likeness. And open all things to our understanding, so we may receive more of Your glory and pour it forth abundantly into the earth, in Jesus' name, amen.