“‘Do you believe that I can do this?’ ‘Yes, Lord,’ they said to Him. Then He touched their eyes and said, ‘Let it be done for you according to your faith.’ And their eyes were opened. Jesus warned them sternly, ‘See that no one knows about this.’But they went out and spread word of Him through all that land” – Matthew 9:28-31
In many ways, today’s Gospel is straightforward. Two blind men follow Jesus, asking for His healing. Jesus, perhaps mindful of the scene that such an event would cause, does not respond to them until He has left the road and entered a house. Inside, He asks them, “Do you believe I can do this?” When they affirm their faith in Him, He touches them, and their blindness is healed.
Jesus brings healing to many during His ministry: He cleanses the leper, heals the paralytic, gives voice to the voiceless, and restores sight to the blind. Often, Jesus heals those who not only ask for healing but also affirm their faith in His identity as a Messiah.
What does a passage about two blind men have to do with the sacred waiting of Advent, especially one in which the blind men defied Jesus’ instruction to keep their healing a secret? Jesus must have known that the men would proclaim the good news of their healing – and of their faith! This passage brings to mind a phrase found in The Fundamental Principles of the Xaverian Brothers: the gift you have received, give as a gift. The two blind men knew the gifts they had been given: sight and faith. In turn, they were so overcome with gratitude and joy that they were compelled to share these gifts with their community, making sure they told everyone of their experience with Jesus, the Messiah.
What gifts have you received that fill you with overflowing joy, compelling you to share that joy with others?
Jesus, as we practice the sacred waiting of Advent, open our eyes to the healing touch of faith in You. Guide our hearts to notice with gratitude the gifts we have received, and inspire us to share our joy.
To view the full Advent 2022 booklet in English, click here.
For Spanish, click here.
For French, click here.