Monday, September 27, 2010

"Be Opened"

Jesus battled a lot of stubborn ignorance from religious leaders who should have been the most willing to see the possibilities of God in his work.

Other people said, “Wow, did you see how Jesus healed the blind man, the lame woman, that deaf guy, and the demon possessed child? How wonderful! How amazing! Praise God!” However, the religious leaders complained that he didn’t wash his hands correctly, didn’t fast like the others, and did his healing on the wrong day of the week.

Instead of opening their minds to new possibilities, they tried to shut him down.

We’re not so different today. Most of us want to keep things the same--the way we’ve always understood them to be. I’m fine as long as no one makes me change or consider that God is different than I was taught as a child.

Those kinds of limitations make me irrelevant to society, out of tune with God, and just plain boring.

It also frustrates Jesus.

When Jesus healed the deaf and mute man, he placed his fingers in the man’s ears and mouth and said with a deep sigh, “Ephphatha,” which means “Be opened.” (Mark 7:34). I think he was speaking to more people than just that man. He was speaking to everyone around him and to those of us who read his words now.

Faith requires a certain amount of openness in order to consider things that aren’t normally considered. It’s interesting that so many of us have gotten it backwards. Our religious convictions can lead us to shut down our thinking to where we never entertain new ideas.

Perhaps Christ’s greatest blessings are waiting for us to become open enough to receive them.

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