Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Wednesday of the Sixth Week in Ordinary Time

(James 1:19-27; Mark 8:22-26)

Faith is said to be a new way of seeing.  One sees through the empty promises of sin to the care which Jesus exemplifies.  Today’s gospel demonstrates faith taking shape in two stages.  In the first, preliminary stage Jesus rubs spittle on a blind man’s eyes.   He sees, but weirdly.  Then Jesus touches the man’s eyes again causing him to distinguish clearly.  The first stage of the cure represents the insufficient way Jesus’ disciples accept him as Messiah.  They see him as a warrior who will somehow ignite a revolution to liberate Israel from foreign rule.  In the second stage the disciples see Jesus for whom he really is – the suffering servant who will sacrifice himself to free humanity from enslavement to sin.

The coming to a deeper, truer faith in Jesus is replicated in many persons’ lives.  One woman lived what today is a rather common life.  She had sexual relations with her boyfriend, whom she eventually married, and submitted herself to the man’s whims.  Then, taking her baptismal faith seriously, she repented of the reckless life she had and became an exemplary Christian, wife, and mother. 

We too want to move to a deeper relation of faith in Jesus.  Our avenue is prayer – speaking to Jesus from the heart and listening to him in the gospel.  Such faith allows us to put everything in proper perspective.  It enables us, like the man Jesus cures in the gospel, to see clearly.