February 12, 2021
‘Be Opened!’
…people brought to him a deaf man who had a speech impediment… He took him off by himself…put his finger into the man’s ears and, spitting, touched his tongue; then he looked up to heaven and groaned, and said to him, “Ephphatha!” (that is, “Be opened!”) And immediately the man’s ears were opened, his speech impediment was removed, and he spoke plainly.
Mark 7:32, 33-35

This healing story resonates in a new way for me in this time of the COVID-19 pandemic. The details of Jesus’ method of curing the man have a stark physicality. That stands out for me now when our physical selves are particularly threatened.

An amazing outcome in the chaos of this crisis: it is as if Jesus’ “Ephphatha!” has somehow sounded. As the infections and deaths increase worldwide, words of protest against racial injustice everywhere have been spoken plainly, and many ears opened to hear their truth.

Dear God who made us all, in this health crisis, help us realize our true equality with one another and respond with respect and warmth.

- Patricia Livingston

Genesis 3:1-8 • Psalm 32:1-2, 5-7 Mark 7:31-37
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