Scripture: Mark 8:22–33
Key verse: (25) Then Jesus laid his hands on his eyes again; and he looked intently and his sight was restored, and he saw everything clearly.
Reflection: There are several curiosities in this text — why did the people beg to have this man healed while in other stories afflicted people are ignored or demonized by their neighbors? And when the man is healed why does Jesus tell him to stay away from the village that seemed to care so much for him? There are several stories here worthy of a midrash or two.
For today let’s focus on Jesus’ method of healing him. Ignoring for a minute the mud and saliva (though there is some good incarnational theology here) let’s ask why it took Jesus two attempts to restore the man’s vision when in other encounters Jesus doesn’t even need to touch to heal? What’s going on here? I wonder?
Someone recently said to me that they no longer practice religion. It’s a curious phrase. I told them I only practice my faith, again and again, in order to grow, to learn, to heal, to be.
Practice doesn’t just mean we don’t understand or haven’t gotten it right — practice means we are moving in the right direction and want to keep going. We love God and want to love God more. Maybe the man healed today was practicing, getting used to seeing and Jesus lovingly, patiently repeated his actions until the man was ready. I wonder what Jesus is helping you practice today?
Prayer: Lord, my teacher and friend. Abide with me today until I learn that you abide with me forever. Amen.
Author: Derek Macleod
[Scripture quotations are from New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright © 1989 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved].