Friday, February 6, 2009

Stuck in a rut.

February 4, 2009
Wednesday of the Fourth Week in Ordinary Time
Mass Readings:
Hebrews 12:4-7, 11-15
Mark 6:1-6

We humans are prone to getting stuck in ruts. I am a creature of habit and I have a morning routine that is seven days a week. I get up at the same time, I eat the same thing, blah, blah, blah. I realized it the other day when I realized that I even transport the morning routine with me when I am in vacation. I even take my breakfast things with me when I travel to see my family. I think my parents have just accepted my eccentricities. God love em.

The scene in our gospel text reminds of someone stuck in a rut. The people listening to Jesus believed that they knew what they needed. So determined were they in their belief, they were blinded to Jesus' message. The people firmly thought they knew just how, what, and who they needed to be the Christ of God. Sure in knowledge but wrong in practice. They could not accept Jesus because they knew him! How could someone they know be anything for them other than who they were convinced, knew, him to be? So, they knew he could only be the carpenter's son so they refused his offer of life.

I am painfully aware of how at times I am blind or deaf to God's Word because I cannot accept the messenger. There are figures in the world and even in the Church that I avoid listening to because I do not like their methods, views, or even theology. These people do not fit the way I believe things should be. I am not proud of this. It is judgmental on my part and I know it but it is the rut I am use to when it comes to these individuals. It is wrong of me to do this. Recently I made myself listen, really listen to one of these individuals and I discovered, even though I didn't agree with everything said, there were things I needed to hear. This individuals words made me rethink some of my preconceived ideas and "spiritual habits" that I just knew were the right way. I hate it when I am so sure of my self that I refuse to listen.

Needless to say, I needed to hear the words even though it was hard for me. I had to be willing to push myself out of my spiritual rut and be open to the Holy Spirit. I didn't care for the messenger but God used that person to reveal truth to me. All I had to do was shut up and listen.

The people in today's gospel couldn't take it upon themselves to push up out of their spiritual rut and be open to the Holy Spirit. It was their loss and Jesus left. It would be wise for us all to be open to the Word of God regardless of our belief that we think we know who, what and how God should speak. We may just find God speaks to us more than we ever dreamed.

So, back to the rut. We all have our routines and ways of doing things. I find routine sometimes reassuring. But, there is a big risk with being in a rut spiritually. We can dig such a deep rut in our spirit that we can no longer see or hear above the ditch we have dug.