At church this morning the Gospel reading was from Mark. (7:24-37)
I’m fascinated that Mark talks about how Jesus was uppity. Pretty much telling that Syrophoenician woman she was a dog. He was completely ‘judgey’ and not remotely loving. But just a moment later Mark tells us about the deaf man. Jesus healed him by saying the Aramaic work “ephphatha” which translates to “be opened”.
Now we know that Jesus “opened” the man’s ears so he could hear. But I find myself wondering if he wasn’t also talking to himself in that moment. Perhaps he needed to be reminded to be open to all the folks he came across and not be so uppity. Perhaps not…perhaps he was really just spitting on that man and removing his life-long deaf- and muteness.
I’m obviously not a theologian. (Uh…yeah, I called Jesus ‘uppity’.) I’m not going to try and deconstruct this Gospel reading. (Anymore than I already have.) I don’t presume to know enough about the bible to create an intelligent dialogue about the ins and outs.
But I will tell you that I was particularly moved by Mark 7:34.
I’ve been feeling that rather intensely of late. The need to be open. I want to be open to all things. I mean truly open, not just my mind, but also my heart. The universe puts so many things in my path each and every day. If I am open to the people and things and opportunities amazing things could happen!
I must not be uppity.
I must not be negative.
I must have my heart wide open and ready to receive what ever comes to me.
Being open takes patience. I’m not filled to overflowing when it comes to patience, but I’m practicing. I’m practicing really hard. I’m learning to let go of what’s beyond my control. To accept not judge. To know my limits. All of these skills (of which I have precious little) became paramount when my brain got sick. But that diagnosis was a blessing because I’m actively practicing all these things. And they are helping me figure out how to better be open.
I’m not in control of what comes at me but I can absolutely control what I choose to receive. If I choose to be open what I receive will make all the difference in the world.
Ephphatha ~ Be opened.
Wouldn’t the world be so much lovelier if we all were?