There was a man once who sat on a roadside near Jericho, begging for alms from pilgrims heading to Jerusalem to worship at the temple. One day he heard that Jesus was passing by. He started calling out “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!” No matter how much people tried to shut him up, he wouldn’t stop. Finally Jesus approached and asked him what he wanted.
Think about it. For as long as anyone could remember, this man had been asking people for spare change. But now, in the presence of Jesus, he asked for something much bigger. “Lord, let me recover my sight.” Jesus did what he asked, but this was much more than just a physical healing. First of all, the man had called Jesus “Son of David,” which was a Messianic title. Not many people–including most of the disciples–were ready to go that far. Second, Jesus said to the man, “your faith has saved you.” That’s literally what the Greek word in Luke 18:42 means, even though our English translations tend to say “:healed” instead of “saved.” Third, Luke says he got up and began to follow Jesus. That means he became a disciple that day. So he regained his sight just in time to witness Jesus dying for His sins a week or so later.
But here’s the point for us: We each spend most of our lives like the blind man, begging this world for whatever it will give us: Money, sex, pleasure, power, approval. All are good, and all satisfy for a little while, but only for a little while. Then we meet Jesus, and everything changes. He gives us what the world never could. We get up and we follow Him. That’s the story all who are Christians share. But somewhere along the way, too many of us stop following Him and go back to begging the world for spare change. I’m not saying we’re not truly His. He never lets go of His own. I’m saying we live like beggars instead of like disciples. I’m saying we look to the things of this world to bring us happiness, meaning, peace, identity and security, instead of pursuing Him fully, with nothing held back. So where are you? Are you following Him and enjoying abundant life? Is every day an adventure of watching God slowly change you for good and use you to show love for others? Or are you back to living off the scraps this world leaves behind?
If you’re interested in learning more about the idea of giving everything to Christ, with nothing held back, check out our recently completed series: https://fbcconroe.org/sermons/nothingheldback/