In the Gospel passage today, Bartimaeus receives a gift of healing from the Lord. Before being given his sight, he had come to Jesus with faith and asked to see. After the miracle, Jesus mentioned faith since, as the Gospels and the Church teach us, God bestows graces according to His will (as we pray in the Our Father “thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven”), and for the benefit of human growth in faith and holiness. In other words, Jesus’ miracles were not performed just for the sake of performing them or making people lives easier. Instead, Jesus healed them in order to help them to follow Him even more closely. At the same time, Jesus did not abuse people’s free will – it was Bartimaeus who desired to see. He came to the Lord and asked for it. At His end, Jesus fixed Barimaeus’ sight and emphasised that the faith had saved him. In other words, the blind Bartimaeus was given the sight not because Jesus was a charity miracle performer. Bartimaeus’ faith enabled him to be healed, and the vision would be a means to strengthen his faith.
We have so many needs in our lives with which we come to God and pray for graces to be given. It is crucial to have faith and come before God’s majesty, sincerely asking for what is needed. God waits for us and our presence before Him, so He can bestow whatever we need. God helps us when we let Him do so and put our effort into it.
However, we can still see so many tragedies in the world. Young people, sometimes kids, die or are seriously ill. Even the Coronavirus pandemic has cost so many lives around the world. So much evil is happening around us. At times, we can even think that some of those who are not religious are doing better than many of those who have their trust in the Lord. It is hard to explain the problem of evil fully. A belief the Church has always been teaching is that in the mysterium iniquitatis – the mystery of evil, it is not the Evil One who has the final word but God. It is God who can bring good out of something looking hopelessly. The best example of evil turned into good was Jesus Christ’s suffering and death on the Cross. In His mysterious providence, God leads us from time to time through suffering to the Kingdom of Heaven.
Łukasz Gołąb – Seminary of the Good Shepherd, Sydney, Australia
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