What if the interruptions in my life are opportunities to reach out to others and further mature me as a Christ follower?
And they came to Jericho. And as he was leaving Jericho with his disciples and a great crowd, Bartimaeus, a blind beggar, the son of Timaeus, was sitting by the roadside. And when he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to cry out and say, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!” And many rebuked him, telling him to be silent. But he cried out all the more, “Son of David, have mercy on me!” And Jesus stopped and said, “Call him.” And they called the blind man, saying to him, “Take heart. Get up; he is calling you.” And throwing off his cloak, he sprang up and came to Jesus. And Jesus said to him, “What do you want me to do for you?” And the blind man said to him, “Rabbi, let me recover my sight.” And Jesus said to him, “Go your way; your faith has made you well.” And immediately he recovered his sight and followed him on the way. (Mark 10:46–52)
My friend and fellow military wife Gwen has a great sign hanging on the wall of her kitchen. It reads, “Interruptions are my ministry.” Is that how you view interruptions?
Military wives know something about interruptions, don’t we? Military orders do not come with a courtesy call to find out if now is a convenient time. Some of the military interruptions I’ve experienced include:
- An interruption of a career
- An interruption of a holiday celebration
- An interruption of a school semester
- An interruption of a vacation
- An interruption while on a date with my husband …
I could go on—as could you.
Have you noticed, as you read through the journeys of Jesus in the Gospel of Mark, how often he is interrupted? At least that is what it looks like from our perspective. This blind man sitting by the side of the road is one of many examples. Did Jesus really experience interruptions or was he just fulfilling his plan for his earthly ministry? Look at the way he responded to interruptions. There is no hint of annoyance or frustration about blind Bartimaeus breaking into his schedule. Instead, he met this interruption, like all the others, with compassionate service to whoever approached him.1
I have to ask myself: What if the interruptions in my life are opportunities to reach out to others and further mature me as a Christ follower?2 Can God even use interruptions from the military to make that happen?
How would your view of military life change if you viewed the interruptions it brought as part of the mission of God for you? What opportunities might those interruptions hold?
Prayer for the Journey
Lord, help me see any interruption as an opportunity for ministry today. Amen.
1 Frances Taylor Gench, Back to the Well: Women’s Encounters with Jesus in the Gospels (Louisville: Westminster John Knox Press, 2004), 52.
2 Thurston, 66–67.