... "Cheer up!
On your feet!
He's (Jesus) is calling you.
I have been reading the story of Bartimaeus for a few weeks now, his story just keeps coming up. Recently, I found myself sitting cross legged on the couch, Bible open, reading this man's story with an eye patch over my right eye.
A day earlier I had purchased a beautiful new quilt for my bed at a steal of deal and was so excited to throw it out over my bed. As I was unpacking the quilt I found that there was a piece of cardboard that it was wrapped around to make it hold it's shape in the packaging. I pulled hard because I wasn't being patient enough to unfold the quilt first. After a second, the quilt gave up that cardboard piece and it me in the eye. I didn't blink it happened so fast. It hurt so bad but after a bit I went back to spreading the quilt out on my bed. The next day was not so fantastic. I developed an infection and my eye was bruised. So with antibiotic ointment and a patch to keep my eye closed, here I find myself reading the story of Bartimaeus, a blind beggar.
I've been very protective of my "good eye" since my right eye took a turn for the worse My fear was that if something happened to it, I'd be blind. I have thought a great deal about the time my oldest son, Cooper, almost lost an eye. It was one of my most frantic moments as a mom. We'd been invited to a fall festival at a friends house. There were always games and good food. One of the games was one you see at carnivals regularly, dart throwing...at bouncy balloons. As I stood watching Cooper step up and take hold of dart and carefully aim it at the board stapled with balloons I had a split second thought, "that dart is going to bounce off a balloon and hit someone in the eye". No sooner did the thought cross my mind did I see the dart leave his little hand, flip in the air, bounce off a balloon and project right into his eye.
The next image that will remained burned in my brain forever is of my son shaking his head, and a dart swinging back and forth from his eye socket. He was screaming, the girl helping with the game calmly pulled the dart out, and blood poured out. Not once did I feel afraid, a strange calm came over me and all I could do was keep telling my son that everything would be okay. We rushed him to the emergency room, to find out that the dart had completely missed his eye and had actually just hit bone near the socket of his eye. A fraction over and he could have been blinded for life.
All these thoughts about vision and our physical eyes running through my head and the Lord gives me Mark 10:46-52 to read and study on. I keep coming back to this story. Today, I found that the words "Cheer up!" jumped off the page.
As Mom's we get hyper focused on the things that are going on or wrong with our kids. I know I do, my kids may have a super positive day at school with lots of WINS! Then, I open the folder and find a bad grade from last week. I don't shrug it off, I address it, we talk about it, I focus on it, and worry about the consequence. We live in a world where society expects parents to be held accountable for their children, our children reflect our parenting and we want to be perfect parents. Don't believe me, check out Instagram or the highlight reel on Facebook. We want the world to think we are perfect Moms. The reality is, in order to achieve that, in private we get bogged down on righting the wrongs and in public we appear to be celebrating the WINS when in fact we have been blinded by the mistakes and losses!
Bartimaeus may have been blind but he also was not a cheery beggar. He was a beggar because he believed the one part of him that crippled him morning, noon, and night was what defined him. He couldn't see. He had no vision. So, he sat outside the gates of Jericho begging. The Word of God even goes as far as to tell us that he was the Son of Timaeus. He was someone's son! He had a family that, to God, was worthy to be mentioned. As a parent, I imagine he always had a home, a place to rest, food to eat, and so much more. However, he chose to do nothing but sit at the gates and beg. He was hyper focused on his disability... until he encountered Christ.
It all started when he had a shift in his belief. One second, he believed he would be blind and useless, a beggar forever. The next second, he heard that Jesus was coming and his belief shifted to healing, if he could just be healed of this one affliction he would be right as rain. The people told him to sit down and be quite and accept his fate as a blind beggar but no, Bartimaeus no longer had ears to hear either. All he wanted was the Son of David to have mercy on him.
Jesus is calling you!
With faith, ask.
Receive & Follow.
Changed & Able.
Serve, along side Christ.
This simple story had such an impact on me in prayer, as a mom. The world will cripple our children's faith. The world will tell them to sit down and be quite. The world will tell them to continue to be hyper focused on what makes us unique and different. The world will tell them that it's okay to remain unchanged. The world will tell them that they should accept their earthly position. The world will tell them that they aren't worthy to be more or do more. The world will whisper lies into our children. Don't believe me? Have you read the headlines lately?
With a joyful heart, get ready, because Jesus is calling us as moms to have faith and ask. He is calling us to rise up and approach Him concerning our children. He is calling us to believe. He is offering us the answers, the help, the guidance, the healing, the miracles, the strength, the ability, to follow Him. All we have to do is ask in faith, receive, and follow. We can not encounter Jesus and not be changed. We can not stand before the throne of our Lord Father and ask the things we need to ask in His Son's name and not expect to receive. Sister, ask and receive! Be changed, be able.
Serve along side Christ in raising up His sons and daughters. Follow Him because you've seen Him that is worthy to be followed.
Here! Hold My Crown! Is a forthcoming devotional for mothers. Written by Aimee Larsen, a mother of 5 children. She walked through having a premie, infertility, miracles, foster care, and adoption.