In Matthew today, Jesus cures an epileptic child and then tells the questioning disciples that due to their little faith, they were unable to perform this healing. He concludes by saying that with the faith the size of a mustard seed they can make mountains move, that "nothing will be impossible for you."
Now, I don't know how many of us have ever tried to will Mount McKinley out of our way, but if we had, we would have found that no matter how much faith we have, that beautiful heap of rock isn't going anywhere, soon. So, instead of looking at this teaching by Jesus literally, what might we consider a stand-in for this seemingly immoveable mountain? What in our life seems to be an impossible task, but through prayer and faith can actually be accomplished?
That's the thing about prayer and faith, impossible things become probable things. We can learn how to approach them with a different attitude, a new focus, a re-imagined and creative way of reaching a goal thought out of our grasp. We can, so often, decide that we do not want to even bother trying to explore new avenues, to find a way to an imagined goal that appears too hard to accomplish. This is understandable, as we are creatures of habit, because the familiar can make us feel as if we are secure, comfortable. But that feeling is quite often a self-delusion. By saying we can move mountains, one of the things Jesus is saying is that residing in our familiar security can box us in to not finding a way to do those things that seem impossible. It thwarts creativity and the movement of the Spirit in our lives.
How do we think outside the box today and move toward a goal that prior to the shift of our focus, seemed an impossibility?
Copyright 2011, The Rev. John F. Dwyer. All Rights Reserved.
Art: Incomplete Wet Feet, 2010, jfd+