Friday of the Fifth Week in Ordinary Time

Lectionary: 333

He ordered them not to tell anyone.
But the more he ordered them not to,
the more they proclaimed it.
They were exceedingly astonished and they said,
"He has done all things well. 
He makes the deaf hear and the mute speak."


The Greek word for proclaimed in the original text is the same word Jesus will use when he directs his disciples to announce -- proclaim -- the gospel to all the nations. It's impossible to keep this Story quiet.
This healing is about hearing and speaking; an ability not given to everyone; and one not to be taken for granted.
A voice says, “Proclaim!”
I answer, “What shall I proclaim?”
....Go up onto a high mountain,
Zion, herald of good news!
Cry out at the top of your voice,
Jerusalem, herald of good news!
Cry out, do not fear!
Say to the cities of Judah:
Here is your God!
The Gospel of Mark is all about proclaiming the Good News. It begins as Jesus rushes out of the wilderness and announces to everyone who will listen and to those who will not, 
"This is the time of fulfillment. The kingdom of God is at hand. Repent, and believe in the gospel.”
It concludes with, "Go into the whole world and proclaim the gospel to every creature."

Jesus' energy might be read as anger. He is furious, irrepressible and sometimes antagonistic as the authorities try to bring him down. But anger is usually borne of fear. The frightened rise up to defend their bodies, loved ones or so-called rights. Just look at the amount of anger in our national discussions when there is no credible threat to our borders or our way of life. It's largely driven by fear, and fed by fear-mongers with profit-driven agendas. 
But we don't sense any fear in Jesus as he leaves the wilderness and begins his mission. His energy is joy, generosity, freedom and a spirited obedience to God His Father. He is utterly fearless even as resistance to him grows stronger day by day. 
His joy is contagious as we hear in today's gospel. They were exceedingly astonished and they said, "He has done all things well. He makes the deaf hear and the mute speak."
The disciple of Jesus, contemplating his life, death and resurrection, may also experience that pure, fearless, irreproachable energy. So long as we belong to the Lord we have nothing to fear. Our conversation demonstrates our freedom; our countenance radiates confidence. Even our silence announces the Good News. 
These gifts invite many to come join us even as they antagonize some who cling to their fears. They can have their alarms, guns, fences and guard dogs; we have the Lord. 

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I love to write. This blog helps me to meditate on the Word of God, and I hope to make some contribution to our contemplations of God's Mighty Works.

Ordinarily, I write these reflections two or three weeks in advance of their publication. I do not intend to comment on current events.

I understand many people prefer gender-neutral references to "God." I don't disagree with them but find that language impersonal, unappealing and tasteless. When I refer to "God" I think of the One whom Jesus called "Abba" and "Father", and I would not attempt to improve on Jesus' language.

You're welcome to add a thought or raise a question.