The Lord has given me a disciple’s tongue.
So that I may know how to reply to the wearied
he provides me with speech.
Each morning he wakes me to hear,
to listen like a disciple.
The Lord has opened my ear.
For my part, I made no resistance,
neither did I turn away.
I offered my back to those who struck me,
my cheeks to those who tore at my beard;
I did not cover my face
against insult and spittle.
The Lord comes to my help,
so that I am untouched by the insults.
So, too, I set my face like flint;
I know I shall not be shamed.
The first reading at Mass yesterday was taken from the ‘Servant songs’ in Isaiah, passages that have from the earliest days after the Resurrection been recognised as prophetic of the Passion of Jesus.
The resilience of the Lord’s servant comes from his being trained to hear the Lord. His whole being is oriented to obedience to the Lord: hearing his word, understanding it, and living it out to the full.
In this Holy Week, may his example prove to be our inspiration.
The flagelation. Cloisters, St Trophime, Arles. (c) 2013, Allen Morris