There is no spoon…
In the MATRIX when Neo goes to meet the Oracle he encounters the “spoon boy.” Neo watches in amazement as the child causes a spoon to bend in all directions. The young sage says, “do not try and bend the spoon, that’s impossible, only try to realize the truth.” Neo asks, “what truth?” “There is no spoon.”
There is no spoon!?! Really, what is that in your hand then? That makes no sense…
The wisdom of spoon boy’s riddle is this: the unity of all things is more real than the separation of things. “There is no spoon” is a call to live more from what unites you with others than from what separates you from others. But the more we see ourselves as separate from other people, separate from creation and separate even from God the more we bend the world to suit ourselves. We have bent the world a lot and it groans from this painful alienation.
Jesus’ way of saying there is no spoon was: “The Father and I are one.” (Jn 10:30) Even though the Father is not the Son and vice versa, their “oneness” is greater than their separation. Jesus’ unity with the Father prevents those who have heard his voice from being snatched from the Father. As we let the word of the Jesus enter our ears, hearts and lives we grow into his eternal unity with God.
This unity is greater than the world and it helps us to live in this world without bending it and the other people who live on it out of shape. The more that we let the word of God, which is love, be heard deeply within and among us we will find what it takes to bend ourselves into right relationship. Bending others is violence but gently bending ourselves is conversion.
The most important bending that we can do is to bend our ear to the word of our vocation. The word of the good shepherd is heard within the community of his own in many ways. The very first Constitution of the Oblate Rule says, “The call of Jesus Christ, heard within the Church through people’s need for salvation, draws us together as Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate.” The groaning of the world and its peoples is a cry for salvation. Hear in it your call from the risen Jesus to make his voice heard and his love known.
In our times hearing the vocation to consecrated life and priesthood is critical to handing on the whole word of God to the Christian community. If you are an elder say to a younger: “I could see you as priest or a religious.” If you are a younger say “Lord I hear your call, but I am scared, please help me take the right steps.” But most of all pray. Because through prayer we acquire our unity with the Father and the Son. On bended knee our posture mirrors our relationship with God, and when we rise from prayer we will follow him.
By Mark Blom, OMI – Vocation Director – OMI Lacombe Canada
Feel free to contact Fr. Mark for advice about discernment and vocation direction. He can meet with you by phone to conduct a short vocation assessment to help you find your way. Contact him at email@example.com to arrange for an appointment.