Book of Psalms, Book of Revelation, determination, discerning heart, divisiveness, energy, enurance, grace, heart, inner work, Jesus, love, Luke, Lynn Bauman, meditation, Peace, pity, psalm 1, rootedness, The Sophia Center for Spirituality, wisdom
In Luke’s gospel account of Jesus with a blind man, it seems the lesson is that the man had to be clear about what it was he wanted in order for Jesus to heal him of his infirmity. We are at the beginning of a new season in the political life of our nation and need to be much clearer than we have been about what is possible and how we might effect the best possible outcome in the circumstances that exist now. I find it interesting that the first lectionary reading for today is the very beginning of the Book of Revelation and the response to that is the first in the Book of Psalms. So we begin anew to deepen our intention, not only for endurance but for the love that has been assaulted in the events of the past year.
My pondering began with the following verses from the first reading. Grace and peace to you from the one who was and who is to come…Moreover, you have endurance and have suffered for my name, and you have not grown weary. Yet I hold this against you: you have lost the love you had at first. (REV 1:4, 2:2-4) I think about the divisiveness that has infected our country and I begin to examine my participation in its rhetoric. While I preach only love, I need to look deeply into my thoughts and feelings that sometimes can speak energetically as loudly as my words to prove a point, sometimes indicating a different message altogether.
Often at wisdom retreats we are guided in meditation to envision our energy going down from our feet through the ground to the very center of the world until we sense a rootedness and then draw up that energy into our heart. In the same way we image the energy reaching up high into the cosmos and again drawing down into our hearts. Thus we are stronger than before and as we do this exercise together, we know greater consciousness and possibility. Lynn Bauman’s translation of Psalm One called me today to this knowing. But the blessed ones grow strong as living trees, their roots sink deep and hidden beside flowing streams which come from you. And through life’s passing seasons they do not cease to bear a plenitude of fruit nor do they fade from giving shade of leaf that covers all with good. (Ps. 1:3)
All that having been said I am left with the question of Jesus to the blind man. It was not enough that this man was asking for pity; Jesus was likely to have been feeling that immediately upon hearing the man’s cry. What he wanted was determination and a discerning heart from the man about what was his intention for the future. Thus the question: What do you want me to do for you? We might consider that question deeply today, reflecting on the state of our hearts, to determine if we are ready and willing to follow through with the inner work involved in the intentional answer of: Please, let me see! (LK 18:41)