Jesus’ question, “What do you want me to do for you?” perplexes me. Everyone can literally see (except the blind man) that the man is blind and needs Jesus to restore his sight. But Jesus didn’t ask the man what he needed. Jesus asked what he wanted. Our needs and wants aren’t always interchangeable. We are uncomfortable articulating our wants, for fear of sounding whiny, like Spalding from the movie Caddyshack— “I want a hamburger. No, cheeseburger. I want a hot dog. I want a milkshake. I want potato chips.” However, there is also a difference between our selfish wants and our desires.
Desires are our deepest longings —for health, peace, love —that bring us closer to God. It is often when we express our desires that we discover what God’s desires are for us, too. We can find great consolation in “naming it and claiming it,” as my mother says. So, “what do you want Jesus to do for you?” —go ahead, name it and claim it.
—Jackie Lesiak serves as Assistant Principal for Professional Development at Creighton Preparatory School in Omaha, NE.