Today's verses are Mark 10:46,47: "And they came to Jericho.  Ana 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!'" Bartimaeus is not only called by name, but he is identified as the son of Timaeus.  Why is this important?  Mark specified his name.  It's as if he is saying to his readers, "Here is his name.  Here is his father's name.  If you don't believe this happened, go talk to him personally!  He will be more than willing to verify what I'm telling is true."  Since Mark was the earliest Gospel, it's entirely possible that Bartimaeus was still living while Mark's Gospel was being read.

What is the story?  Bartimaeus was a blind beggar.  He rested by the side of the road outside Jericho, most likely an often-traveled road.  His only means of living was begging.  His life's sustenance depended on sojourners passing by, hearing his cry, and giving alms to him.

One day he heard that Jesus of Nazareth was passing by.  Undoubtedly, he had heard he had accomplished great and mighty miracles.  He didn't know exactly where Jesus was.  He just knew he was within earshot.  So he cried out, "Jesus of Nazareth, have mercy on me."  That's how he began his prayer.  "Have mercy on me!"

It's a prayer Jesus always loves to hear.  The word "mercy"means not getting what we deserve.  Blind Bartimaeus was asking the great and mighty miracle worker, Jesus, to take away his blindness.  He was asking him for mercy, that he wouldn't have to continue in this terrible life situation any more.

Do you have a great need today?  Are you not sure how to approach Jesus?  If so, begin this way.  Cry out to him, "Have mercy on me."  Come to him in great humility.  Ask for him to never give you what you deserve.

I promise you that Jesus loves to hear this kind of humble prayer.  It's a great starting point for all our needs.

"Jesus, have mercy on me."

And then tell him your need.