Chapter and verse divisions were not part of the original books of the Bible. They’re generally helpful as locators (the poor Preacher of Hebrews even says “But someone somewhere…” in Hebrews 2:6), but we can miss connections if we follow them too closely.
Luke put the stories of blind Bartimaeus (not named in Luke but in the other Gospels) and Zacchaeus back-to-back because we’re supposed to see the connections between them.
These two men are both unable to see. They’re both desperate to get to Jesus. They both desperately need Jesus.
These two men are quite different: one is a blind beggar, and the other is a powerful, rich, and corrupt tax collector.
Both leave drastically changed after meeting Jesus.
When the evening comes and the light fades, the heart’s curtains are drawn; its candle dims. A heavy cloak draws around wounded limbs; dew beads on the ground, watering the shades that emerge like weeds that come out to play when the evening comes.
No dressing or salve applied in the light of day to ward from fever’s red-flushed heat means a festering aching will deplete the health and clarity of solar flight when the evening comes.
Living in a chilly Cleveland hotel–– With its quiet echoes of memories–– Has to be its own special kind of hell: Singing the blues all night can’t set you free. The old grays’ stories of kindness retell Their own sad, dusty, difficult stories. The wind as cold as Pancho makes you face The one thing you need most: forgiving grace.
The rains have made the path be squelching mud That pulls feet down with ghoulish grasp; each step is as tiring as ten and thuds Into mire: to rise, fighting. So why keep on struggling through muck and sludge That slows and beckons with its clasp? There is beside a well-worn path to trudge That speeds the feet alighting.