MIRACLE OF THE TINY WHISPER
August 9, 2020: A Reflection for the 19th Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year A
1 Kings 19:9a, 11-13a
After the fire there was a tiny whispering sound. When Elijah heard this he hid his face in his cloak. (1 Kings 19:13a)
Take courage it is I; do not be afraid. (Matthew 14:29)
You reveal yourself in the most unlikely places and ways, Jesus. Is it any wonder that we miss your tiny whisper which announces your Presence? Surely you would be in the great, grand, and glorious. It is befitting a God to make a splash. To announce divine Presence with a real eye opener. Who would ever even begin to look for you in the ordinary, obscure and laborious. It is way too simple and in some ways almost feels sacrilegious to bring you down to the level where we spend our days. Besides, sometimes it’s nice to have a splashy God, a God who gets things done on our timetable. But the only splash you want to make is into our hearts through trust and love. So you meet us where we are. You whisper into the daily, “Take courage, it is I; do not be afraid.”
The daily… So predictable, so inescapable in its sameness and petty, disagreeable situations that rub us the wrong way and which we just can’t seem to will away. We feel stuck sometimes in the lack of clarity on what to do. And we want so much to give you everything: our hearts, our lives, our love. We just can’t seem to make it happen on our own, no matter how much we may try to will it.
Then you come in the tiny whisper. Maybe it’s just the whisper of seeing another person in a different, more understanding light. It can be anything, anything at all. God isn’t fussy. The tiny whisper breaks open the Presence of God in our heart and in the circumstance. And the miracle of the whisper makes even the most mundane circumstance shimmer with God.
Jesus, open the ear of our hearts and attune us to the whisper of the ordinary. Help us to see that we don’t have to wait for a flashy God to appear in our lives. You work miracles in us and through us when we yield to the whisper. When all the love of our heart attunes us to a tiny, still voice and we welcome the Kingdom ever deeper. When, with all the tenderness of an infinite God, you whisper over the waters of our lives: Take courage, it is I; do not be afraid. And we follow.