As He went out of Jericho with His disciples and a great multitude, blind Bartimaeus, the son of Timaeus, sat by the road begging. 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!'
Then many warned him to be quiet; but he cried out all the more, 'Son of David, have mercy on me!'
So Jesus stood still and commanded him to be called.
Then they called the blind man, saying to him, 'Be of good cheer. Rise, He is calling you.'
And throwing aside his garment, he rose and came to Jesus.
So Jesus answered and said to him, 'What do you want Me to do for you?'
The blind man said to Him, 'Rabboni, that I may receive my sight.'
Then Jesus said to him, 'Go your way; your faith has made you well.' And immediately he received his sight and followed Jesus on the road.
Whether He met a blind beggar, Roman centurion, Samaritan sinner, Canaanite mother, bleeding woman, paralyzed man, temple ruler, earless attacker, dead friend, distraught dad, grieving mom, dangerous lunatic, excited children, frenzied fans, hungry hoards, ailing masses, shunned lepers or a tax collector sitting in a tree, Jesus went out of His way to help.
Without exception, Jesus was responsive to the needs of those around Him. He was never too busy, too tired or too important to stop and offer assistance. Preoccupation was not His occupation. Instead, He was the First Responder.
Actors, models and talent for Christ: whom has God placed in your path? Who are your needy neighbors or stricken kin? Who's in your classroom or office? Who are the beggars at your gates? Are they easily ignored or simply irresistible?
To God, they're the latter. He identifies with them: 'Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me' (Matthew 25:40).*
Actors, models and talent for Christ: consider fame a net: 'I will make you fishers of men' (Matthew 4:19). By it, your witness is extended, and people are caught by your charisma. In the world's version of fame, stars become simply irresistible and fans become easily ignored.
But when Jesus became famous, He reversed this process. He was diligently attentive to His fans, and the One He ignored was Himself. He resisted fame's trappings, and embraced fame's duty.
Because responding to our needs was His top priority. His Example is the One to follow.
To Be Continued...
* 'The Lord longs to be gracious to you; therefore He will rise up to show you compassion' (Isaiah 30:18)
P.S. To read the other devotions in this series, please see the Leadership series.