The two blind men who are sitting by the roadside when Jesus and his disciples leave Jericho will not be deterred. When they begin shouting, “Lord, have mercy on us, Son of David!” the crowd sternly orders them to be quiet (v. 30). Still the men persist, shouting even louder. Moments later Jesus touches their eyes. They regain their sight and begin following Jesus.
Their persistence changes their lives, as it does for so many. When you cannot picture what you are looking for, remain resilient. If such things came easily, everyone would be doing it. When you can see a vision of what God is subversively doing in the world, and in your own lives, keep at it—piecing together bits of wisdom and flashes of insight until a mosaic takes form. At frustrating times in my life, when I could not see beyond the horizon before me, I was often too quick to give up, allowing impatience to cloud my vision.
In the 1930s, a British officer named James Taylor landed a plane in the highlands of what is today Papua New Guinea, near a village that had never before seen any trace of the outside world. Before Taylor took off after his brief visit to the village, one courageous man cut vines from the jungle and lashed himself to the fuselage of the airplane. “He explained calmly to his loved ones that, no matter what happened to him, he had to see where it came from.”
I know of no better metaphor for the Christian faith. Like the courageous man, we lash ourselves to Jesus’ way, unsure of where it will take us but understanding there is no other way to live until we find out.
Annie Dillard, For the Time Being (New York: Knopf, 1999), 204.
When have you given up on yourself or on God? What could strengthen your resolve, your persistence?
God, make my desire to know you more deeply stronger than my fear of failure and loss. Amen.