Sunday Readings here.
There are two ways that we can consider today’s gospel reading.
We can and should look at these healings from the viewpoint of our own needs and those of our family and ask the Lord for healing. That is certainly valid. “Ask, and you shall receive,” the Lord said. We can ask the Lord and receive His care.
The second way we can and should also look on these healings from the viewpoint of the Lord. We are called to be followers of Christ. We are called to love as He loves. We are called to have compassion for the hurting. We are not called to judge the cause of their pain. We are called to care for them. And yet, sadly, some of us will say that a person’s condition is his or her own fault and then move on and away from them.
So many see the cause of the sickness and not the sick people. Do those sick due to their own sinfulness merit less care from us than other people? Of course not. At least, not if we are followers of Christ. Some people may now be sick, but have always been difficult. These are the relatives, neighbors or business associates we are required to see and to endure. And now they need our help. It is not easy putting up with their comments. It is easy to ignore them. Yes, they may be a pain, but they also may be in pain.
Jesus didn’t care if the woman had a situation which would have caused the temple priests to call Him defiled. He didn’t care if curing a person would get Him in trouble with the authorities if that cure was on the Sabbath. He didn’t care of He had to drop everything and rush to the bedside of what the world would see as an insignificant little girl, enduring mockery in the process.
So, what we have in our Gospel today is defiled lady, a dead child, and a Compassionate Savior. His care, love and healing were far more powerful than the prohibitions of Jewish law, far more powerful than the forces of nature, and far more powerful than the forces of death. Jesus is only concerned about those who hurt and who need His healing. How can we be any different and still call ourselves His followers?
- Rev. Joseph Maloney, Pastor