Monday, October 04, 2010

Luke 17:1-19

Pentecost +20 - Year C

Luke 17:1-19

The space between wake and sleep where drowsing, active-dreaming, springs to life is a critical creative space. Here the interface between Samaria and Galilee is just as creative. You might want to consider where a creative interface is for you - it may be geographical or relational, perhaps it is is an art form or a time of day - and intentionally and regularly engage it.

Here, in the in-between, the least likely avenue to spiritual growth shows up. In this case, outcast lepers come out of nowhere [where in real life would lepers be waiting just inside the boundaries of a village - wouldn't you expect them to be at some remove?]. Lepers become judges at the gate and might bring an appeal for healing from any number of perspectives. Here the healing rubric is, "mercy" and raises a question of whether the dreamer will be mercy-full - full enough to have it overflow.

In this dreamtime, a community of lepers could be made up of Jews and Samaritans. Their common exile binds them together in much the same way that folks from differing religious groups have more in common with those with similar experiences in a different religious group and be in closer accord with them than with someone else from their religious group who hasn't arrived at a similar values package.

Whether the lepers were all Jews except for one Samaritan or all Samaritans, sending Samaritans to Jewish priests would have no meaning to the Samaritan. It takes an especially active dream to have a/the Samaritan return to Jesus, as though to a priest, to say "Thank you", to offer "Praise/Sacrifice" for completed healing.

And so, in a daze, Jesus reflects that a faithful, trusting, relationship - regardless of its religious orientation - is a source of healing. Quite a dream - healing goes beyond ritual, expectation, or privileged religious affiliation. The faith of a faithless person is a wonder to behold.

May you dream strong dreams of new ways of being together. This sort of dreaming will lead you to situations as equally strange as Jesus and the lepers - all healed, mysteriously on a hidden journey, even if through ways passing strange and beyond our usual sense of reality's limits. As you enact your new, strong dream, may you hear, "Go, on your way; your dream has made you well."

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