What if this doesn’t work out the way you hoped it would? What if God doesn’t do for you what you asked him to do? What if you end up looking like a fool with this faith? Let me tell you, Sis, God is calling you to a place where you’re willing to look like a fool. Where you’re willing to believe if he doesn’t do what you asked him to do, he’s doing something better. If it doesn’t work out the way you hoped it would, all that disappointment is being worked together for goodness in your future.
Here’s how I know … because God is for you, not against you. He’s not out to destroy you. He’s not scheming to defeat you. He’s not concocting twisted plans of darkness to steal your hope and rob your joy. That’s not God … that’s Satan. Satan is against you. Satan is out to destroy you. Satan is scheming to defeat you. Satan has very specific twisted plans to overwhelm you with darkness where you have no hope or joy remaining. But Satan has not, and will not, win. He is a defeated foe cast down to the pits of hell. He sits in misery and only wants you to join his misery. Don’t accept that invitation. God is calling you to come to him instead!
To come to God, you can’t hold on to what has been holding you back. To experience the fullness of the life God is offering you, you have to let it all go. Yes, let it go not knowing how it’s all going to work out. Let it go before you see the next step. Let it go, fully trusting God will meet you here and guide your next steps. No matter if it goes how you hoped it would or not, you let go and trust.
Blind faith. Full surrender. All-in trust.
We see the example of this blind faith, full surrender and all-in trust in Mark 10: 36-52:
“As Jesus and his disciples, together with a large crowd, were leaving the city, a blind man, Bartimaeus was sitting by the roadside begging. When he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to shout, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!” Many rebuked him and told him to be quiet, but he shouted all the more, “Son of David, have mercy on me!” Jesus stopped and said, “Call him.” So they called to the blind man, “Cheer up! On your feet! He’s calling you.” Throwing his cloak aside, he jumped to his feet and came to Jesus. “What do you want me to do for you?” Jesus asked him. The blind man said, “Rabbi, I want to see.” “Go,” said Jesus, “your faith has healed you.” Immediately he received his sight and followed Jesus along the road.”
Bartimaeus was not only blind, but he was a beggar. Every day, he would sit along the road in Jericho, using his blindness for people’s pity. We’re not judging Bartimaeus, it was all he could do in his situation. In their culture, any sort of physical ailment alienated you from others. You were unable to work, therefore, you depended on the pity of those who wouldn’t really help you, but they might throw a coin your way.
Within this short telling of Bartimaeus’ story is one verse that changes everything. One verse that applies to you and I today. Verse 50, “Throwing his cloak aside, he jumped to his feet and came to Jesus.”
A cloak isn’t just a coat, but it was such a valuable garment, most could only afford to buy one in their lifetime. It was the only thing to keep you warm. And for Bartimaeus, it was likely the only thing of value he had. He not only wore it, but he also would have used it as a blanket to cover up with. And even more than that, his cloak became his rug where he would sit throughout the day and beg. His cloak collected the coins of pity people would throw at him.
Bartimaeus’ cloak was his identity. It was a symbol of his condition. He could hide in his cloak and not be seen. With his face hidden in shame, others would see his cloak and recognize he was a beggar, but not see his blinded eyes. But when Jesus called on him, he threw his cloak aside. He didn’t take it with him. Even though it was his only thing of value, his means of not only staying warm, but also his means of hiding and his means surviving, he threw it aside and went to Jesus.
But, what if Jesus wasn’t going to heal him? What if Jesus wasn’t going to restore his sight? What if Jesus wasn’t going to radically change his whole life in that instant? He was throwing aside his one and only thing of value.
It didn’t matter. Bartimaeus had blind faith. Full surrender. All-in trust. He was holding nothing back and getting to Jesus.
This is what God is asking of us today. Throw aside whatever it is that you’ve been holding on to. Let go of the security you’ve been hiding behind. If Jesus is calling you out, step out! What will happen when you do? I have no idea, and really, neither do you. We’re not given the details on how it’s all going to work out. God hasn’t given us a peak at his 5 year plan with a guarantee of success here. But what he has done is promised his plans are good. He has promised he will work everything together. He has promised he has already gone ahead of you and made a way. He has promised he will be right here with you and never leave you. He has promised he is for you and not against you. And now he is calling you.
He is calling you, just like he called Bartimaeus. My girl, come close to me. Come trust me. Come surrender to me. Come follow me.
Our blind faith is necessary here. A blind faith that says, I don’t know where I’m going, but I’m going. A blind faith that says, I don’t know how this is going to work, but I’m going to work with God. A blind faith that says, this doesn’t look possible but I’m not counting on how it looks anymore. A blind faith that throws aside the cloak.
Yes, your cloak. The very thing you’ve been holding on to. The thing you’ve been hiding behind. The thing that has caused others to look at you with pity. Girl, you don’t need pity. Pity is poison. Stop hoping someone will feel sorry for you. You don’t need a single soul to feel sorry for you. You only need Jesus to call you, and he is! Now, how will you respond?
Will you throw aside your cloak? Will you let go of that security? Will you peel back the layers and reveal your true, vulnerable self? Will you risk looking foolish? Will you go against the crowd which tells you that you can’t? And will you fully trust that God is absolutely FOR you enough to throw it all aside and go?
The crowd kept trying to hush Bartimaeus. As he yelled for Jesus to have mercy on him, the crowd rebuked him. “Hush, blind boy. You’re not important. You don’t matter. You’re not good enough to be noticed. You’re of no value.” He couldn’t see the crowd, but he could hear the voices. Just like you can hear those voices. The voices that tell you you’re not important, you don’t matter, you’re not good enough. Are you going to sit there hiding in your cloak, continuing to listen to those voices?
Or will you rise up in your blind faith, in spite of what the voices says, and let go of everything to go after Jesus? Will you fully surrender? Will you all-in trust?
Bartimaeus had no guarantee Jesus was going to heal him and give him his sight. But he knew what was most important … he knew he could.
I’m telling you, Jesus can change anything and everything for you. He can radically turn this around. You need to know he can. And when you know he can, you simply have to have blind faith to throw everything else aside for your full surrender and all-in trust. Surrendering to his plan over your plan. His way over your way. His timing over your timing. All-in trusting if he doesn’t do it the way you thought he would, then he will do something better. All-in trusting if it doesn’t work out the way you hoped, then it’s working together for something greater. This is blind faith. Believing in what you can’t see, you don’t know, and you can’t do on your own.
Throw the cloak! Drop the excuses. Stop the hiding. Give up the pity. This is no longer your identity. Jesus has called you out.
What will he do when you respond? I don’t know, but I know he will do things only he can do, and it will be part of a plan bigger and better than we could have imagined on our own.
Throw the cloak before you know. What is he asking you to leave behind to go to him? What is he asking you to give up in blind faith? Do it. Go all-in and watch him work!