(Part 113)


January 7, 2015

Today’s gospel:  Mark 6:45-52

The disciples saw Jesus walking on the sea and they were terrified (v.49-50a). They witnessed him calm the wind and they were astounded (v.51). Then Mark records something puzzling. “They had not understood the incident of the loaves. On the contrary, their hearts were hardened.” (v.52). They had not understood. They did not see. They did not grasp the vision.

But not only did they not understand, were terrified and were astounded, but their hearts were hardened! Why? What does it all mean? They were blinded in that they could not see what God was clearly showing them. With eyes that could not see, their hearts could not accept. God was already manifesting His great glory, through the miracles of Jesus. But their senses were dull, they could not properly discern, divine illumination was not piercing through. Their minds were still darkened by the night.

The disciples failed to properly reflect on the miracle of the multiplication of the loaves and fish. It was an awesome miracle indeed. Had they fully appreciated it, they would not have wondered about his walking on the sea and calming the wind. They would simply have moved from glory to glory in their appreciation of Jesus and his divine power.

It is the same with us. Through the years we have witnessed many miracles, both personal and communitarian. I myself was raised from the dead (almost dead) on the third day. There have been many miraculous healings. The radical conversions and transformations have been astounding. We know God works miracles. Or do we? Or have we forgotten? Or have we looked on such incidents as flukes and now have begun to doubt?

We need to recover the proper vision, the divine vision. Otherwise our hearts can become hardened. Already transformed into hearts of flesh, we might revert to having hearts of stone. What is the vision? That God is the all-powerful God, the God of miracles. That God ardently desires to bring His people back to Himself. That God intends to use us as instruments in this work. That today, in the call to the New Evangelization, this work is to be rapid and massive.

If we do not appreciate or accept this, then our vision is dulled, and our hearts can become hardened. We might even oppose the vision and the work. We can become obstructionists and cause division.

Put no limits on what God can do. Do not replace God’s plan with faulty human plans. Do not pretend to know more that the Spirit on how to go about God’s work. See with God’s eyes. Think God’s thoughts. Flow with God’s Spirit. Harden not your hearts.

Expand your vision.

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