Thursday, July 31, 2008

Spitting Jesus and More Confessions

This is truth. I am being totally honest with myself and who I am. I have a still and semi-petrified soul. It is shameful. I have many good intentions, but my heart is not pure.

This morning it occurred to me that something was wrong in my soul. Before I drove to work, I thought I should use that time to say some prayers, something is better than nothing. If I say them out loud, perhaps my deaf soul will hear it.

When I started the car this morning, the radio was blaring country music. I turned it down a little. I shut off the air conditioning in the car to save gas. It was bearable, but hot. I started to focus on how hot I felt and kept telling myself it was a short twelve minute drive and I could bear it. I drove the speed limit and focused on traffic. I did not say a single prayer. I did not think about the Creator.

As I sat quietly this morning before I began my work, I remembered I had planned to pray in the car. I felt a restless aching. There was nothing there—no goodness, no virtue. There is something wrong. Lately, I have thought several times, I am, my family, we are lukewarm Christians. Like this excerpt from Revelations.

15I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either
one or the other! 16So, because you are lukewarm—neither hot nor cold—I am about
to spit you out of my mouth. 17You say, 'I am rich; I have acquired wealth and
do not need a thing.' But you do not realize that you are wretched, pitiful,
poor, blind and naked. Revelation 3:15-17
That is who I am and I know it. It has been a while since I have made it to reconciliation. It’s for no other reason other than I do not think to go. It is not in the forefront of my mind. I do not wish to reject God and I know I have sinned. I do remind myself of that, but I never follow those acknowledgements by thinking I should make it right. I must be choosing to continue to do wrong. That part of me that used to say, “Make it right,” is quiet.

Further, it is my belief that good Catholics ought to live everyday in the ritual of the Faith. That’s what makes it a religion. My family does not do that. We always pause and say, this is the ritual; this is how we ought to pray and conduct ourselves on a daily basis; and then we never do it. Part of me envies the Muslims and their obvious devotion to their faith. They pause five times a day and pray. They make outward signs and act with faith. It is the same with the Orthodox Jews and Orthodox Christians. I am sure they sin too, but at least they are not lukewarm.

I always wanted my future family life to be different from how it was when I was a kid. I always wanted my family to pray together at least once a day; and not just at the dinner table. Well, here I am with a family of my own, a husband, a son and a daughter, and we have not made any sort of effort to prayer together. I know that it is hard to get a toddler to sit still and pray with mom and dad, but there is no time like the present; after all, he is a full-fledged member of the Church too. It is because I have never made it my practice to act in such a way.

I guess this is not only a confession, but a resolution to make it different. I sit here with trepidation that I will not be able to change. My husband and I have resolved so many times to be different. We have made efforts that dwindle away quickly. I wonder how I will do it and pray that I can do it.

“Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on us sinners!” I am still a sinner.

Spitting Jesus

On another note, while I was looking for the passage from Revelations above, I went to and typed in a number of combinations of phrases including the word “spit,” because I couldn’t remember where in the Bible it was, or the exact phraseology. So, at one point I typed in Jesus spit. And the search engine came up with a multitude of passages containing Jesus and spit. Our God is a spitting God. Now, I know it’s symbolic. I know that it is supposed to symbolize baptismal cleansing. But, it is slightly amusing to see all these passages at once where Jesus decides to spit on someone to heal them, or talks about spitting. It’s such a graphic image. So, here below are two passages in which Jesus uses his spit to heal.

32There some people brought to him a man who was deaf and could hardly talk, and they begged him to place his hand on the man. 33After he took him aside, away from the crowd, Jesus put his fingers into the man's ears. Then he spit and touched the man's tongue. 34He looked up to heaven and with a deep sigh said to him, "Ephphatha!" (which means, "Be opened!"). 35At this, the man's ears were opened, his tongue was loosened and he began to speak plainly. Mark 7:32-7:33

22They came to Bethsaida, and some
people brought a blind man and begged Jesus to touch him. 23He took the blind
man by the hand and led him outside the village. When he had spit on the man's
eyes and put his hands on him, Jesus asked, "Do you see anything?"
looked up and said, "I see people; they look like trees walking around." Mark

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