Opening the gate
“Everyone who listens to these words of mine and acts on them…” Matthew 15:36
In the movie Phenomenon (1996), the main character has a garden, and he is pestered by a rabbit eating all his vegetables, no matter what fence he constructs. One night he decides to open the gate to the garden and wait. All of a sudden, he realizes that he had trapped the rabbit in; the rabbit was trying to get out.
Why did Jesus come into our world? Was it because the people were trapped in their fears, in their doubts about what it meant to be really human? Did Jesus come for us because we often fence in our worries, our doubts, our discouragements, our pain and suffering? Did Jesus come to show us how to open the gate, to slowly and steadily let go of our hesitations, disappointments, and negativity?
The coming of the Word into our world spoke words of comfort and of challenge, words calling us to action and to commitment. Jesus, the Word of God, opens new possibilities of peacefulness and freedom.
DAILY PRACTICE: Go for a walk. Each time you pass a fence, call to mind feelings or attitudes that are perhaps trapped inside you. Each time you pass a gate, ask God to help you be open to the words of Jesus that bring you healing and comfort and call you to freedom.
ADVENT PRAYER: God of Openings, you sent Jesus to free us from all the things we’ve fenced in. I am grateful that Jesus’ life and words teach and empower me to be open to healing, positive attitudes, and the freedom only you can give.
From: ADVENT 2013. Daily reflections, practices and prayers.
The Promise of Peace. Janet Schaeffler, OP.