As he approached Jericho, a blind man was sitting by the roadside begging. When he heard a crowd going by, he asked what was happening. They told him, “Jesus of Nazareth is passing by.” Then he shouted, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!” Those who were in front sternly ordered him to be quiet; but he shouted even more loudly, “Son of David, have mercy on me!”
Jesus stood still and ordered the man to be brought to him; and when he came near, he asked him, “What do you want me to do for you?” He said, “Lord, let me see again.” Jesus said to him, “Receive your sight; your faith has saved you.” Immediately he regained his sight and followed him, glorifying God; and all the people, when they saw it, praised God.
New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989, by the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. USCCB approved.
Why does Jesus ask the blind man, “what do you want me to do for you?”? Everyone can literally see – except for the blind man – that the man needs Jesus to restore his sight. But Jesus didn’t ask the man what he needed. Jesus asked what he wanted. There is an important distinction between needs and wants. Needs are necessary. Wants carry a selfish connotation, bringing to mind Veruca Salt wailing “but I want it NOW!” in Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. Similarly, there is an important distinction between wants and desires. Our desires are our deepest longings, and expressing our desires can help us realize God’s desires for us. My mother calls this, “naming it and claiming it.” This is why Jesus asks the man “what do you want me to do for you?”. He wants the man to “name it and claim it”.
Today, “name it and claim it.” What do you want Jesus to do for you?
—Jackie Schulte is the Dean of Faculty Formation and a history teacher at Creighton Preparatory School in Omaha, NE.
I so much want to be in control.
I want to be the master of my own destiny.
Still I know that you are saying:
“Let me take you by the hand and lead you.
Accept my love
and trust that where I will bring you,
the deepest desires of your heart will be fulfilled.”
Lord, open my hands to receive your gift of love.
—Henri NouwenPlease share the Good Word with your friends!