So throwing off his cloak, he sprang up and came to Jesus. – Mark 10:50
Did you have a security blanket or a bear or something that helped you to feel secure when you were a young child? For me it was my thumb. I sucked my thumb so much that it would get raw and sore. When it was time for me to enter kindergarten, my parents sat me in the big gold velvet chair. The chair that they always sat me in when they needed to have a serious conversation. They said that to go to school I needed to stop sucking my thumb. The surprise to me as I reflect on that story is that I did without a big fuss. That thumb gave me security, but I was somehow, someway able to declutter my fears and let go of my thumb to enter school.
Bartimaeus in this Sunday’s reading was motivated to see Jesus and he too let’s go of something that gave him security, his cloak. He throws it on the side as he moves toward Jesus. The cloak for him as a beggar gave him warmth, a place to collect money, and a bed to sleep. Him throwing that cloak to the side suggests that he believed that he wouldn’t need it anymore, and that he would be healed.
That was Bartimaeus’s first act of faith and trust that Jesus would heal him. The reading this week provides us a contrast to the story of the Rich Man we heard a few weeks ago and his insecurities and fears. When Jesus asked the Rich Man to sell what he owned, he left Jesus and went the other way. Bartimaeus leaves the securities of what he knows and follows Jesus.
So, the question for us is, what are our security blankets, what do we fear decluttering but would strengthen our faith and trust in Christ if we did?
Gracious God, help us to declutter our fears, to let go of those security blankets that hold us back from fully following you. Help us to know that when we let go of our fears, your peace will find us and your work through us will bring hope to others. Amen.