At daily Mass and in the Liturgy of the Hours recently, I've been listening rather carefully to the antiphons. Maybe it's that I've been so distracted that one Scripture verse is all I can take in at a time. Maybe I've just been appreciating the beauty of God's word in a new way and I like snippets that are short enough to repeat to myself and come back to throughout the day.
I especially love the Gospel acclamation, how in standing up and preparing to hear the words of Christ, we are given a little verse to whet the appetite and focus the heart. I guess it's more poignant for me this time of year in that we have only a few days left before Ash Wednesday in which to sing the "Alleluia". I love saying Alleluia.
Anyway, today's Gospel acclamation is: "Open our hearts,O Lord, to listen to the words of your Son." And the Gospel it precedes(Mark 7: 31-37) is the story of Jesus restoring hearing to a deaf man, a physical opening of the ears that allowed this man both to listen and to speak without impediment. I think the Gospel acclamation helps us bear in mind what is really key to this passage: that is, that it is Jesus who must do the work. Yes, the deaf man had to be brought to Jesus, and we do have to bring him our hearts and ask him to open them. We have to approach Him, but we can no more heal ourselves by ourselves than we can fly to the moon without the guidance of others.
And so we come entreating Him that our deaf ears be opened to the beauty of His words, that our speech impediments be removed and our voices restored.
It's been a few months since I started this blog and my resolution to post regularly and share the haphazard results of my meditations on God's word didn't last more than a couple weeks. I didn't quit listening to God's word, but I haven't been internalizing it to the extent that I know I should. So I'm asking the Father to open my ears and my lips to hear the words of His Son and repeat them in my own small way.