Saturday, July 05, 2014

Saturday, July 5, 2014

Today’s text

Matthew 11:25-26

At that time Jesus said, ‘I thank you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and the intelligent and have revealed them to infants; yes, Father, for such was your gracious will.

Awake to wonder

I wish I understood this. I have a hunch Jesus was not telling us to destroy our minds and flee into no-nothing anti-intellectualism.

The mind is a wonderful thing that takes us far, but it fails to reveal the deepest truths of our life, the ones we need to keep joy alive in our souls.

We need another kind of knowing, one to which Jesus invites us.

His words call us to innocence, the kind of innocence that looks at the world with wonder, with amazement at the surprising reality of your own life, astonished at the given-ness of life itself.

It can be a hard thing to step away from the chatter of one’s mind and its need to name, analyze, compare and judge the value of every blessed thing and person we meet.

The mind naturally stands back to judge and evaluate, but the heart, if for a moment we can escape the mind’s inner monologue, allows us to truly receive and live life, its sorrows, joys, disappointments and hopes … and not merely to think about them.

I worry sometimes about losing my spark, about descending into a long-held, deeply entrenched melancholy that overtakes the so that I no longer wake each morning eager to live, full of thanks for the day, for life … and for all the ways the miracle the Great Love I know as God finds me.

Maybe those who moved Jesus to praise God were those who still had the capacity for wonder and gratitude for the utter gratuity of life and love. Like children, they were not burdened with the oppressive need to judge and analyze everything they encountered. They could simply receive life, the day … as it came to them.

Perhaps this is what made them innocent, like infants, still able to know and feel the miracle of love and the Presence of the Holy that filled him.

But how do we regain innocence once lost? No longer are we children.

I don’t think there is only one way to reawaken the innocence that is able to receive God as God comes to us every morning and every moment. Practicing gratitude helps.

But maybe we can’t reawaken anything but must be grasped--usually unexpectedly--by a great beauty, a great love, or even a great sorrow before we can receive the Love and Blessing that filled Jesus--and which is present, however hidden, in our daily lives and places.

Maybe we need to look at more clouds, the blue of the sky and feel the evening breeze. Or maybe we should start with the breath in our lungs--and really feel and know each one as something we neither made nor asked for.

Maybe then joy will fill us at the wonder of our lives, the miracle of love and the truth of the Great Love that Jesus gave to the innocent … because only they can receive it.

Pr. David L. Miller

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