Bishop BandaHomily, Friday, 5th week, Year 2.
In His work of healing, Jesus gives us an indication of His mission – namely the salvation of all. Already, we saw this yesterday with the healing of the daughter of the Syrophoenician woman. Today, with joyful spontaneity the cured man forgets the restriction not to tell anyone and announces the good news of what Jesus has accomplished.
The healing of a deaf and dumb man in our gospel passage is a symbol of all of us who are deaf to the voice of the Lord and whose mouths do not give the Lord glory and praise. In healing the man’s deafness and his speech impediment, Jesus shows us that He came so as to open our ears so that we may listen to the voice of the God and we may not harden our hearts. At the same time, Jesus came to open our mouths so that we may sing praises to the Lord and give thanks for His wonderful deeds.
However, when we sin, we separate ourselves from God and we close our ears to the voice of God and no prayer comes from our mouths. Jesus came to forgive and to save us and to turn our hearts back to God. In this way our ears may listen to what the Lord has to say and with our mouths we may respond with praise and thanksgiving to the Lord.
After the cure of the deaf and dumb person, Jesus ordered the people not to tell anyone about it. This restriction was intended to emphasize that the motivation of His actions were not self-promotion or self-glorification but He was moved by care and compassion for all and especially the needy. However, “the more He ordered them not to, the more they proclaimed. He had done all things well”.
Our gospel passage therefore, invites us to use our words, deeds and every bit of knowledge in the service of others. Our availability to others should not be regarded as an act of generosity but an act of obligation for which we need not look for and claim publicity and recognition – but a mere duty, for which we shall be held accountable.
May our healing give us an opportunity to listen attentively the will of God and stimulate in us a heart of praise and thanksgiving for all that the Lord has done in our lives.