Lagura: Lord, that I may see-A A +A
In the service of the Word
Saturday, October 27, 2012
IN the movie, “Slumdog Millionaire,” a fine young Indian boy with a healthy pair of eyes got forcibly blind by his “masters” or syndicate protectors. Being blind would evoke people’s pity, so they would give him some pittance for alms. Without any qualms at all, the members of the syndicate robbed the young boy of “the windows of the soul”--God’s gifts for us to come into contact with other men, women and children as well as the rest of God’s beautiful creation.
Bartimaeus, in Mark’s gospel, unfortunately was born blind. In those times there was scarcely any hope to recover one’s sight from inborn blindness. Moreover, the blind was a pariah, for no one had much liking to converse with one whose blindness was thought of at that time as a punishment from heaven. So, he was forced to live in misery and had to beg to survive. But, when he heard that Jesus--reported as a wonder-worker--was coming to his town, he “saw” a glimmer of hope; he enthusiastically followed the crowd. For him, the Lord was the only one who could help him recover his sight.
In Jesus was the only hope Bartimeaus had to receive his sight and lead a normal life once and for all. So he went along with the throng, and when he sensed that Jesus was near, he shouted, “Jesus, son of David, have pity on me!” No amount of rebuke from the crowd telling him to shut up could silence him or cool his excitement. All the more he shouted. His persistence finally paid off when the Lord called for him and asked him what he wanted. Without a moment’s hesitation Bartimaeus replied, “Lord, that I may see!” And see did he, for his faith in Jesus gave him his sight.
Many others in the throng heard of Jesus, and when they got the report that he was coming to their place, they trooped with the rest of the crowd to see him. They heard him, they even witnessed the wonder he performed on the blind beggar. Sadly, not too many believed, disproving the dictum: “To see is to believe.”
A great English poet became blind, but although he did not receive the gift of physical sight from the Lord, still his insight into the wonders of God was simply astonishing. So, he wrote:
“When I consider how my light is spent, ere half my days in this dark world and wide
And that one talent which is death to hide, lodged with me useless, though my soul is bent
To serve my Maker, and present my true account, lest he returning chide
‘Doth God exact day-labour, light denied? I fondly ask. But Patience, to prevent
That murmur, soon replies: ‘God doth not need either man’s work or his own gifts
Who best bear this yoke. they serve Him best. His state is kingly; thousands at his bidding speed
And post o’er land and ocean without rest.
They also serve who only stand and wait.”
The English poet, John Milton, in this lovely poem, On His Blindness, did not curse his blindness. Even though his eyes were dark and dim, his profound faith in God made him not to ask for the gift of sight. Rather, he saw through it all the wisdom and goodness of the Divine. Him Milton served for the rest of his earthly life.
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on October 28, 2012.