Then he returned from the region of Tyre, and went by way of Sidon towards the Sea of Galilee, in the region of the Decapolis. They brought to him a deaf man who had an impediment in his speech; and they begged him to lay his hand on him. He took him aside in private, away from the crowd, and put his fingers into his ears, and he spat and touched his tongue.
Then looking up to heaven, he sighed and said to him, “Ephphatha,” that is, “Be opened.” And immediately his ears were opened, his tongue was released, and he spoke plainly. Then Jesus ordered them to tell no one; but the more he ordered them, the more zealously they proclaimed it. They were astounded beyond measure, saying, “He has done everything well; he even makes the deaf to hear and the mute to speak.”
New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989, by the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. USCCB approved.
Today’s Gospel has a particular meaning to me. As a more introverted and quieter person, I usually have a lot to say but rarely know how to say it. Jesus commands the deaf man, and in turn us, to “Be opened.”
I can’t help but feel that Jesus’ command goes deeper than healing the deaf man. We are called to greater openness than just speaking and hearing. But, rather, openness to love and solidarity.
This year, I am working as an Alum Service Corps volunteer. The most important thing I’ve learned is (as U2 put it) “sometimes you can’t make it on your own.” I have found myself desiring an openness to God and those surrounding me at Regis Jesuit High School. I’ve experienced an honest change – a conversion of sorts – from trying to make it on my own, to desiring that God and others help me along my path.
How are you called to use your particular strengths and gifts toward a greater community and mission?
Tough, you think you’ve got the stuff
You’re telling me and anyone
You’re hard enough
You don’t have to put up a fight
You don’t have to always be right
Let me take some of the punches
For you tonight
Listen to me now
I need to let you know
You don’t have to go it alone
And it’s you when I look in the mirror
And it’s you when I don’t pick up the phone
Sometimes you can’t make it on your own
—Excerpt from U2’s Sometimes You Can’t Make It on Your Own