I am impressed by many people who cry out to Jesus for help. Bartimaeus who shouts louder and louder when he hears Jesus is nearby. A woman who works her way through the crowd and reaches out to touch Jesus’ clothes. The small group who climb up on a roof to lower their friend in front of Jesus. The centurion who says: “If you just say the word, my servant will be healed.” I am impressed. Jesus heals them, and he commends them for their faith.In contrast, Jesus’ own disciples are not so impressive. They spend lots of time with Jesus, see the miracles, see him healing all kinds of people. Yet when a storm rises up, when life gets rough and tough and they need help, the disciples get really afraid. “Teacher, do you not care that we are perishing?” They cry out in fear.
Jesus himself notes that when Bartimaeus, the woman who touches him, the group of friends and the centurion, they cry out in faith. I’m impressed and wish I were more like them. Yet I relate more to Jesus’ disciples who cry out in fear.
Jesus asks: “Why are you afraid? Have you still no faith?” These questions are gentle, gracious and loving. They are only harsh when we say them to ourselves. Jesus has compassion for us as we are. It doesn’t matter who we’re impressed by or who we might wish to be. Jesus hears us cry, heals and saves us as we are. Whether you’re in faith or in fear, cry out to Jesus for help.
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