There is much we can learn from the story of the blind man of Jericho.  We learn about the power of faith, about perseverance, and we can learn a valuable prayer.

We would do well to make that prayer of the blind man our own.  “Lord, that I may see!” We need to pray for the grace to see Jesus for who he really is, to see what he asks of us, to see what he wants to do for us.

To see Jesus for who he really is is a great gift.  The opposite is a terrible blindness. The gospels tell us of instances of that blindness.  We read of people who actually saw Jesus in the flesh, saw the works of power he accomplished but were unable or unwilling to see him as the Messiah.  Neither the chief priests nor the Pharisees had the eyes of faith needed to recognize who Jesus really was.  They trusted in their own under- standing of what God wanted of them and where salvation was to be found.

They were religious people but people who looked through the eyes of a certain religious prejudice.  They were locked into their own view of what a person had to do   to be saved.  In their narrow view salvation was to be found in a scrupulous following   of many detailed rules they thought were either contained or implied in the law of Moses.

They saw that sometimes Jesus did not observe that law, that he sometimes caused a disturbance in the synagogue by what he said or did as when he drove the money changers out of the temple.

More importantly, Jesus told them they were mistaken about true religion and told them of a new commandment.  It was more than they could take. They rejected his teaching sought ways to discredit him, to persecute him, and eventually seek his death.

Of course, we are far removed from those people both in time and in perspective. We have the gospels.  We have the church and its long history.  We can see much better …. or can we?

If we abstract from the particular circumstances, we realize our situation is really not different from theirs. It is essentially a question of Jesus coming into people’s lives. The crucial question for us is whether or not we are able to see how Jesus is coming into our life here and now. That is why we need to join the blind man of Jericho in approaching Jesus, saying with faith and perseverance:  Lord, that I may see!