learning / soul care / spiritual practice

“What do you want me to do for you?”

Every Wednesday morning I get to spend time in the company of a few lovely ladies. They have decided that they are serious about Jesus — not more serious or less serious than the many others who have decided they are serious about Jesus, but simply that they want to know Him more and are serious about that.

(Though you would not think that, just walking by the room where we meet. You would think we were a Comedy Group for Jesus because there is a lot of raucous laughter involved.)

The other week we were talking about the story where Jesus is in the middle of a huge crowd and a blind man is calling out for him. Jesus finally turns to the man and asks, “What do you want me to do for you?”

It is all I can do to not laugh at Jesus sometimes . Maybe in the same way that I imagine the pizza place laughs at me when I call them and they say “What can we do for you?” and I say, “I’d like to order a pizza”. I hear them think, “Obviously, lady” and I think back, “Well, you asked.”

Jesus. He’s a blind guy. He called you over because he wants to be un-blind.

But in between that absurd moment and the next there is a silence, one that carries the immensity of the question: What do you want me to do for you?

Our deepest desires are the place in our life where God wants to show off. We have pretend desires for cupcakes and firmer thighs (yes, both, simultaneously) or maybe we want perfect children and a clean house. I would definitely ask Jesus for these things (and I have), but they are not what I really ACTUALLY want.

I want deeper things like a place to belong and restored relationships and to know and faithfully walk into the life he’s called me to. I want things like freedom from the pressure to perform and freedom from emotions that boss me around. I want fulfillment. Sometimes I just want to know He is there.

These are the things Jesus wants to give us. Maybe not instant-give us like he gave the blind man his sight, but from what I can tell in the Bible, he is totally down with us being free and fulfilled and full of joy and love. These are the things we can’t really do on our own. Which means these are the places where he can show off.

So what if Jesus asked you what you want? What would you say? What do you want so badly that you would chase Jesus down in the crowd until He turned and looked at you?

Imagine it if it helps.

Maybe in your story, you aren’t a blind guy, living in ancient Israel. Maybe instead you are you. And you are in your house. And Jesus shows up at your door. You clear a spot at the table for him, pushing aside the breakfast dishes and newspaper and yesterday’s mail. You sit. You talk. Drink coffee. Eat…do you have fancy pastries? Or maybe just Goldfish crackers, since that’s what’s in the cupboard. You talk about all sorts of things. After a while, it is time for Him to go, but before he does, he looks at you and asks, “What is one thing I can do for you right now?”

What is the first thing that comes to mind? What are the longings that reside deep inside, buried under neglect or fear or distractions?

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