Do you know anyone who is satisfied with the way things are? There seems to be something inside each of us that wants to reach beyond our self and touch something “more.”

We are each plagued by a kind of holy discontent.

In our own way, we are each crying out for mercy. We are each, deep in our souls, longing for an experience with God.

Surely God will hear our cries and respond to our longings. Even now, as we read, reflect, and pray, may we hold out hope that God will sneak up on us in the form of forgiveness, acceptance, peace, joy, and love.

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Many scolded him, telling him to be quiet, but he shouted even louder, “Son of David, show me mercy!”

Mark 10:48

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Life can be really hard sometimes. Things happen. We fail. People disappoint us. Tragedy strikes unexpectedly. And truth be told, we’re only human beings, doing the best we can. But instead of receiving recognition and acceptance, at the end of the day most of us feel passed over and ignored.

If we’re not careful, we may start believing that what we have to say doesn’t matter, which can lead to the belief that what we think doesn’t matter, which can lead to the belief that what we feel doesn’t matter, which can lead to the belief that who we are doesn’t matter.

I’m sure Bartimaeus occasionally got caught in this trap. But in today’s text he decides to cry out even louder. Instead of falling prey to the belief that he doesn’t matter, he takes a risk and asserts himself — “Son of David, show me mercy!”

His decision to show up and cry out is an invitation to all of us. When we are tempted to give up, we can know that Christ is present, and he hears us.

Chris Robertson

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God, I really need you. At times it feels like nothing matters, like I don’t matter. I’m surrounded by people who continually make mistakes, and for some reason I keep making mistakes too. So please be patient with me, and help me to be patient with myself. Amen.

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Mercy is truly a grace-filled gift, one that is offered to all of us in and through Christ.

“The grace of God means something like: Here is your life. You might never have been, but you are because the party wouldn’t have been complete without you. Here is the world. Beautiful and terrible things will happen. Don’t be afraid. I am with you. Nothing can ever separate us. It’s for you I created the universe. I love you.”

from Wishful Thinking: A Theological ABC by Frederick Buechner (1973)

Chris Robertson

Rev. Chris Robertson loves everything about Jesus. Formerly a youth pastor, he’s now the manager of a veterinary practice in East Tennessee. In his spare time he enjoys reading, hiking, and wrestling in the floor with his two boys, Shane and Theo.

Leaning on the Everlasting Arms

Jim McConnell

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