A leper came to Jesus begging him, and kneeling he said to him, “If you choose, you can make me clean.” Moved with pity, Jesus stretched out his hand and touched him, and said to him, “I do choose. Be made clean.” (Mark 1: 40-45)
I do choose. I do choose. I do. I do.
I have a tape recording of myself as a three (four?)-year-old dramatically retelling the story of Bartimeaus the blind man in the Gospel of Mark with some pretty awesome description. (I was repeating a record I listened to–endlessly–of the story.)
“Cwose woor eyes. Pwetend wu are bwind. Isn’t that weerd?”My preschool self tells the story just as the scripture does. Jesus comes to the man and asks, “What do you want me to do for you?” as if blind Bartemeaus has the right to ask. As if we make the demands and Jesus is our slave.
I am at a loss for words this morning. My bedroom is dark and the windows are down. There is clean laundry to be folded and unreturned emails to be written. There’s a baby who wants to eat the cat food and a little boy who needs to read more about volcanoes. And I am sitting in this moment, just this moment, longing for Jesus to come to me, moved with pity. Not pity for my circumstances. My circumstances are lovely. I just want him to move toward me. I want his hand to touch me. I want him to choose to make me whatever I need to be made today.
Because as much as I may have it together or not have it together. As much as I may long for more and the next moment feel overwhelmed with joy at what I have, I am the leper begging, in need of relief, of restoration, of the human hand of God.
And Jesus wants to know what I need of him.
Oh, that I may hear him say: I do choose, I do choose. I do. I do.