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Get into the ring! How this works...

This is easy! Each week on Thursday I post my homily main focus for preaching this coming Sunday. What I am hoping for is a reaction from people in the pews. Does my "focus" connect with your daily life, faith, and experience? Or not? Either affirm the direction I am going in (by giving me an example from your life) or challenge me, ask for clarification! Questions are the best! Reaction rather than reflection is what I'm looking for here. Don't be afraid, get in the ring. Ole!

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Lent IV - April 3, 2011

-The homily from 3/27 is in the library->
-The scriptures for this Sunday are at
-I am preaching at 5:30 Mass on Saturday and 12:30 Mass on Sunday


That's not a nice word. It certainly isn't meant as a compliment. It is used in it's most benign way in reference to research or scientific methodology. Frequently, the best researchers are desperate to identify their biases in regards to the subject to be studied. The doggoned thing about bias is that you don't readily see them.

If one wants to be free of bias, which is nearly impossible, one must be constantly vigilant and interested in seeing them. The reason it's hard to see your own bias is because bias is part of the way you see. So, can you see the way you see? Rarely does one have the courage to see one's bias. And often the best we can do is to admit our bias and try to compensate for it. You really are never free from your bias.

The scriptures this week and the art of believing is imaged as seeing. Grace, in fact, may be define as to "see as God sees." Most of us suffer from our biases regarding religion. Jesus is presented in Johns gospel as the Truth... that must be seen. The religiously trained and engaged people in today's story of the blind man were especially blinded to Jesus' Truth and Jesus as the Truth. Their bias was messianic expectation. They were so certain about what and who and how the messiah would be that they couldn't acknowledge or see the Real Thing as He came. Bias!

I think too many Catholics have a broken/deadly bias regarding God and eternal life. It is sad because it blinds them to the Real God they think they see. How might that bias be affecting you? Fear? Self-doubt? Anger or resentment? Many things are blinding us to seeing as God sees or even seeing God as He desires to be seen.


JoyFuralle said...

Had me so confused I had to look up the definition: Bias: Inclination or preference that influences (but ought not to) one's judgment from being balanced or even-handed.

You put a negative connotation to it, but I don't see it that way. Ha! There's that "sight" thing you were talking about. Okay, so maybe I'm biased to see things in a more positive way instead of a cynical way. Isn't bias also a choice? Can't my bias be towards being positive and open towards whatever the Lord desires? Can't God use my bias for things that are good and true to lead me more deeply into Himself? Can we please hear some preaching on what a good bias looks like also?

anon 1 said...

I agree that we are never free from bias and – unless we continually work at compensating for the bias we have – we are thereby blinded. There are several ways we can keep our bias in check. We can question ourselves and our motives as we take action, make decisions, etc. We can also engage the counsel of others whom we trust, know us well, and whom we believe have a handle on faithful living. But one of the messages that I like in this week’s Gospel is that Jesus told the blind man to “ ‘Go wash in the Pool of Siloam’ —which means Sent—. So he went and washed, and came back able to see.” It reminds me of the opportunity we have at the Eucharistic Liturgy, where we can hear God speaking to us in the Scriptures and set our hearts aright based on doing so; we can join our wills to that of Jesus’ and surrender to the will of the Father; we can open ourselves to the transforming power of the Holy Spirit and also be fed by Jesus thereby becoming stronger members of the Body; and then we can respond to being SENT back out into the world with clearer vision, renewed in love, and able to share that love with others in a way that we hope can one day reach an unconditional level.

It is valuable to have our own good judgment to keep our bias in check; and the benefit of input from others who know us well is of great help. But if we open our hearts – and our eyes – the power of the Eucharist can enable us to “live as children of light – which produces every kind of goodness and righteousness and truth.”

Anonymous said...

I think we would agree that God has no bias.

Bias potentially imposes restriction, limitation.

So, how can we, God’s Holy Children, apply any type of limitation or restriction on our sovereign God.


That is, of course, if one does believe that God is sovereign.