Building One Another

E. Stanley Ott

FOLLOW Vol 10 No 10

April 12, 2011

Dear Friend,

As we approach the celebration of Palm Sunday I love to reflect on what happened as Jesus left Jericho, his final stop on the way to the trial awaiting him in Jerusalem.


The story in brief: “They came to Jericho. As he and his disciples and a large crowd were leaving Jericho, Bartimaeus…, a blind beggar, was sitting by the roadside… Jesus stood still and said, ‘Call him here…’ So throwing off his cloak, he sprang up and came to Jesus.” Mark 10:46-50*


When Jesus calls you go! And he is calling you – right here, right now – so go to him – open your heart to his voice. “My sheep hear my voice. I know them, and they follow me.” John 10:27


Bartimaeus’ story continues: “Then Jesus said to him, ‘What do you want me to do for you?’ The blind man said to him, ‘My teacher, let me see again.’ Jesus said to him, ‘Go; your faith has made you well.’ Immediately he regained his sight and followed him on the way." Mark 10:51-52


Bartimaeus is healed and Jesus says, “Go,” not to get rid of him but to send him back to a life of sight, light and joy. Bartimaeus was a free man and could have gone anywhere.


He decides to follow Jesus. I love that! While Bartimaeus is not mentioned again in the New Testament, one can only assume he was a witness to the unfolding events from Palm Sunday, the teaching of Jesus in the temple to his betrayal and ultimate resurrection. 


When Bonhoeffer spoke of discipleship he used this language: “When Jesus calls a person to follow, he bids him come and die.”


Bartimaeus would have seen first hand and early in his following of Jesus the deep suffering and highest joy that would follow.  May you and I love the Lord who loves us and follow him wherever he would lead.


With joy - E. Stanley Ott

Copyright 2011 E. Stanley Ott

*Scripture from the NRSV