The road out of Jericho was always well-traveled, but Bartimaeus could sense something different in the air. Just as the angle of the hot sun on the back of his neck told him the time of day, the buzz of the crowd, the whispered excitement, and the press of bodies told him the truth that his ruined eyes could not — something was stirring.
Slowly, he pieced together the scene: a Healer, a Miracle Worker named Jesus was heading his way, and the word on the street . . .? This Teacher just might be the promised Messiah.
A seasoned beggar, Bartimaeus waited until just the right moment and then poured every possible ounce of drama into his anguished plea:
“Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!” he howled.
“Pipe down, Bartimaeus,” hissed the embarrassed townspeople, but the blind beggar called out all the louder.
In this encounter of a life time, Bartimaeus put all that he knew about Jesus into his heart’s cry, for he had a huge and impossible dream. Bartimaeus wanted to see, and he boldly broadcast his deep and urgent need to the only One in the universe who could help him.
Saying our dreams out loud can be intimidating — even frightening.
It feels vulnerable.
Courage and Strength from an Upholding God
As a young woman, I believed that God was calling me to teach the Bible, and so I volunteered for a summer ministry that landed me in front of a crowd of rowdy kids with nothing in my trembling hands but my Bible and a few flash cards. Thinking that preparation — knowing my material inside out – would chase away the terror, I studied hard with a pounding heart.
One evening, my team leader flipped the pages of my Bible away from the story of blind Bartimaeus and into the book of Isaiah, handing me a torch of Truth that re-ignites even today whenever I sit around a circle of women with open Bibles:
Fear not, for I am with you;
Be not dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you,
Yes, I will help you,
I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.
Isaiah 41:10 (NKJV)
That young woman who hid behind her long hair and struggled to make eye contact with the world still finds her way back into my head sometimes. When I’m standing at a microphone, or preparing to click on “publish,” or leading a stressful meeting, I’m tempted to be still, to shut down, and to believe the lie that my words don’t matter — that I am, somehow, unqualified.
When fear threatens to extract all the air from my dreams, I’m thankful for the courage and strength that come from an upholding God. Mustering every fragment of truth that I can remember about Him, I release my dream to His care, and I hear the Spirit gently whispering:
Would you rather give in to the fear and miss this opportunity?
Have you forgotten that I am the God who says, “What do you want me to do for you?”
In the light of this blazing truth, may we answer God’s omnipotence with a trust that cries out, fearless.
By grace, may we let our fear drive us to the One who casts out all fear.
May mercy, peace, and love be multiplied to you,
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This post first appeared at God-Sized Dreams