“And when he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to cry out and say, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!” And many rebuked him, telling him to be silent. But he cried out all the more, “Son of David, have mercy on me!” And Jesus stopped and said, “Call him.” And they called the blind man saying to him, “Take heart. Get up; He is calling you.”
– Mark 10:47-49
Attention. Infants get it by crying so hard. Children receive it by making tantrums. Students want it from their teachers by raising their hands. We demand it every time we are speaking to someone. Should we demand it or acquire? Just like how firemen see a smoke nearby for them to respond in a rescue mission, same with everyone. We need to get people’s attention by creating something that will cause them to stop and look at you.
In the story, Jesus was about to pass by the roadside in Jericho where there was this blind man named Bartimaeus shouting at the top of his voice. He is shouting the name of Jesus. Properly addressing Him, he shouted “Son of David”. In this case, Jesus would know that this man was calling for Him – that he was calling for a specific person by name, calling Jesus as someone he knew personally. However, since a crowd of disciples was following Jesus, maybe He did not noticed his cry. But some people who heard him asked him to stop. Why? Maybe because he is blind and probably would ask for alms or whatever they could give to him, and yet, he shouted all the more. There then, Jesus heard and turned His head. Bartimaeus has gotten his attention. Jesus, the unstoppable God that even death could not contain; the unstoppable One who never stops loving us. He is unstoppable enough to finish the road to Calvary by laying Himself down for us even His disciples tried to stop His death. For the one of the most uncommon situations, “Jesus stopped.” The blind helpless beggar had an unstoppable faith that made the unstoppable God stopped.
How did the Bartimaeus was able to get His attention? Persistence and perseverance. How many times did we stop praying for something we prayed for so long and God haven’t answered yet? It could be the salvation of a loved one or a break in our career. He honors our persistence and perseverance in our prayers. Didn’t He mentioned in a parable that a persistent friend that knocks in the middle of the night to ask bread will eventually receive what he asked for because of his impudence? (Lk. 11:8) Never stop praying persistently with perseverance so that we won’t miss the point of prayer in our lives, that is to get “in touch” with Jesus – hand to hand experience like what Bartimaeus had.