WORD of the DAY
And people brought to him a deaf man who had a speech impediment and begged him to lay his hand on him. He took him off by himself away from the crowd. He put his finger into the man’s ears and, spitting, touched his tongue; then he looked up to heaven and groaned, and said to him, “Ephphatha!” (that is, “Be opened!”).
(Mark 7: 32-34)
Jesus is now in the land of Tyre and Sidon to bring the Good News to those other than the Israelites. Even here they bring Him a man who was deaf and mute, begging Him to extend His hand over the man, an ancient gesture of religious and therapeutic intercession. Jesus takes the man aside. Then He places His finger in his ears and with His salvia touches the man’s tongue, thus using his own external senses to make them the instrument of his healing. What an admirable way of communicating physically…
Jesus then raises His eyes to Heaven, that is a spiritual gesture. Jesus raises His eyes and groans perhaps telling of the fatigue of the miracle, and then pronounces the word “Ephphatha!”, which means –be opened.
The man is jubilant and runs to announce the miracle, ignoring Jesus’ recommendation to be silent.
Sometimes, Lord, in our spiritual life we are deaf and dumb. We are deaf to Your Word and do not live it or pray it. As a consequence we are mute on the level of communication and deaf because we do not hear the needs of our sisters and brothers. Grant us the gift of listening to You and proclaiming You.
The voice of Cardinal Carlo Maria Martini
Let us ask God that, as we keep our eyes fixed on Jesus, we may run along the path of faith so as to have an open heart and the possibility of accomplishing, even in our littleness, great things in God’s eyes.