In Luke18:35-43 we are introduced to a man who was blind that Jesus encounters on his way to Jericho. The man is on the side of the road, begging. For most of human history, people with disabilities were at the mercy of others. There were no social services to educate, protect, or provide. For the majority of people with disabilities, that meant begging. So, when the man hears the crowd going by and learns that Jesus is passing by, he calls out, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!”
But here is where things start to get interesting. “Those who led the way rebuked him and told him to be quiet.” What’s that about?! Sadly, it’s not uncommon when one person tries to get help for others to try to quiet them. “You’re embarrassing yourself. You’re making the town look bad. We shouldn’t talk about those things at church. Don’t air our dirty laundry. If you have to get help, if you feel the need to change, what does that say about us?”
But what did the man who was blind do? He doesn’t become silent. He shouts all the more!
There is no shame in needing help. We all need help sometimes. It’s called being human. There is shame in silencing people who speak up for help. Don’t be silenced by the shushers. Speak up. Whatever your struggle, be honest about it. Be truthful enough with yourself and others to know your need and name your need. Share your struggles with trusted friends. Seek help. Shout it out to Jesus. Lord, have mercy.
Interestingly, it is those who shushed the man who couldn’t see clearly in the end. As for the man who was blind, his faith, his persistence, his refusal to remain silent is what made healing and restored sight possible.