Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Daily Office Reflection: Signs and Wonders

Psalms 61, 62 * 68:1-20(21-23), 24-36; Jeremiah 2:1-13; Romans 1:16-25; John 4:45-54

Have you ever wished for, prayed for a sign, for a miracle? Have you ever wanted Jesus to cure you, heal you? Cure a loved one, heal a loved one? When those desires, prayers, wishes remain unfulfilled, how do we deal with that outcome? It is so easy to become disappointed, to become angry and to turn away from our faith when this seems to happen to us.

Jesus returns to Galilee today and heals, from a distance, the young son of a royal official, who after that healing, believed. He must have had a hope to approach Jesus for the cure he wished to have happen to his son, but he didn't believe before it happened. This seems like an odd lesson for us who do believe, who do have faith, and so often our prayers, wishes and desires seem to go unanswered, are un-responded to. What are we to make of this?

Perhaps there is another way to look at this passage and these type of miracle stories. Jesus was showing the world he was walking in that he was different from the prophets who came before him: that he was God here on earth announcing a new world, a new kingdom, a new way of being. Jesus didn't announce that he was making us not-human, immortal. Jesus was telling us that our world view needs to be different, the way we interact with the world needs to be different, the lens through which we see and understand life needs to be different. Perhaps the signs and wonders we need to witness and be a part of are as different. Perhaps those things we wish for need to be different, for we are not immortal, nor will we ever be. 

If we look at what is at the base of Jesus' actions, of God's actions, we find love. If we focus on that love and the love that lives at the core of each of us, our world view will be changed, and those desires, wishes, prayers may change, or at least may be more realistic. This will not happen overnight for us and we need to be patient with ourselves as we turn our expectations and our desires and our wishes and our prayers on their heads.

Our life is a sign and a wonder from God. How we effectuate the kingdom's furtherance during our short stay here on earth is the quandary and yet still holds options for further and more marvelous signs and wonders for us to witness and participate in.

Copyright 2009, John F. Dwyer. All Rights Reserved.

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