Seeing with the eyes of faith
A Reflection for Monday of the Thirty-third Week in Ordinary Time
Find today’s readings here.
“What do you want me to do for you?”
He replied, “Lord, please let me see.”
Jesus told him, “Have sight; your faith has saved you.” (Lk 18:41-42)
In today’s Gospel, the blind man gets one shot to ask Jesus for help, and he doesn’t waste it.
Imagine you are the blind man. You have been sitting by the side of the road for who knows how long. Crowds pass by all the time, and most of the time they ignore you. But this time is different. The crowd has a different energy. When someone tells you Jesus of Nazareth is passing, you know you only have a moment to catch his attention, so you say the first thing that comes to your mind: “Son of David, have pity on me!”
It works. People are telling you to be quiet, but Jesus has heard you. He asks the crowd to lead you to him. “What do you want me to do for you?” he asks. This is your moment. A chance like this probably is not going to come again. What are you going to ask for?
This is the question I prayed with today. And I was a little surprised by the answer that came to me.
Everything will change when we can see.
Sight. That’s what I asked for. Just like the blind man, I wanted to see.
Now, I should be clear that I can physically see just fine. But I think what I was reaching for was a kind of spiritual sight: to look at people and to see them, immediately, with the eyes of faith. I don’t want to judge them, or think about all the ways they could hurt me. I want to see them with the eyes of Jesus.
The blind man doesn’t have to think twice. He knows what he wants from Jesus. Everything will change when he can see. And because he has faith, his request is granted.
What does it take to see with the eyes of faith? Barring the kind of miracle we witness in today’s Gospel, I think the answer is prayer and service to one another. Only by spending time with God and one another will we start to see things differently.
And everything will change when we can see.