Just wondering, Jesus.....
Do you have questions for Jesus? Bartimaeus had an important one. And surely you do, too. Read the story of Blind Bartimaeus from Mark's gospel.
"They spent some time in Jericho. As Jesus was leaving town, trailed by his disciples and a parade of people, a blind beggar by the name of Bartimaeus, son of Timaeus, was sitting alongside the road. When he heard that Jesus the Nazarene was passing by, he began to cry out, “Son of David, Jesus! Mercy, have mercy on me!” Many tried to hush him up, but he yelled all the louder, “Son of David! Mercy, have mercy on me!” Jesus stopped in his tracks. “Call him over.” They called him. “It’s your lucky day! Get up! He’s calling you to come!” Throwing off his coat, he was on his feet at once and came to Jesus. Jesus said, “What can I do for you?” The blind man said, “Rabbi, I want to see.” “On your way,” said Jesus. “Your faith has saved and healed you.” In that very instant he recovered his sight and followed Jesus down the road." -Mark 10:46-52 (The Message)
Imagine you could experience God, in the form of Jesus, from the same position as Blind Bartimaeus – street level – from the roadside. If you knew Jesus was passing you by on the roadside, would you have the courage to ask Jesus your question? What would you ask? What did Bartimaeus ask of Jesus? What was his request? Do you think it was difficult for him to ask this? Was he afraid, embarrassed, or ashamed? How did he know to ask Jesus this important question? Do you think it is okay to ask difficult questions of Jesus? What do you think Jesus thinks when we ask our questions? Does he welcome them? You see? Lots of questions! And that's okay!
This Lenten season we are going to be considering some very important questions that people of faith have long been asking Jesus. It’s okay to ask questions. However, questions of faith often don’t have concrete or easy answers. Are you okay with not getting definite answers to your questions?
Some say questioning or doubt is a sign of a weak faith. I would argue that asking questions and expressing doubt occasionally are actually signs of growing in one’s faith. How can this be? Did Jesus ever ask questions? What questions did Jesus ask? What question do you think Jesus would have liked to have asked? Yes, Jesus asked lots of questions, too. He's not unlike us in that way.
If you haven't already, please fill out the Lenten question cards that you can find in the narthex. On them, ask your important question of Jesus. Place your questions in the basket on the table in the narthex and I will do my best to address them in my sermons throughout this Lenten season.
Lent begins this Ash Wednesday. I hope you can be present in worship that night at 7:00 p.m. as we receive communion and the imposition of ashes upon our forehead. The ashes remind us of our mortality while communion reminds us always that death doe not have the final say. Jesus died so that our mortal souls can live forever. It's a glorious gift from God. Find out more about our Lenten theme and season.
See you in Church! (and bring a friend!)